Five-year-old Ailey Wales was born with Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome, a condition that prevents her from communicating verbally, walking, and playing with toys, reports Ellen Scott of the UK’s highest-circulating newspaper Metro. The child has cognitive delays, which means she doesn’t understand the purpose of toys. Ailey also faces difficulty in holding them. Shannon, her 25-year-old mom, heard about sensory baths, thinking it would help soothe Ailey.
As the family was unable to afford a special tub, they raised £10,000 (US$12,280) to renovate the house. The bathroom was installed on September 20, with the tub having LED lighting, disco lights on the ceiling, soft jet sprays, and speakers. The entire downstairs bathroom was also redesigned to allow Ailey to “relax and splash around in a peaceful environment."
“Ailey doesn’t really understand what toys are for, so she just enjoys watching other people playing with them,” Shannon states. Her five-year-old daughter considers her bath as her “relaxing place” because she loves bubbles. Hydrotherapy jets are also beneficial for Ailey’s muscles. Shannon adds, “We’ve got disco lights installed in the ceiling, which synchronize with music, and there are LED lights in the bath.”
The tub cost £7,000 (US$8,590) before any other installations and delivery were made. The said amount also includes a new toilet and flooring. Shannon’s family wouldn’t have managed the cost if they had to pay for everything. They planned to loan money, but they did not want to go into debt. Shannon states, “I wasn’t keen to ask people, but friends offered to help out.”
|Photo Credit: Shannon Wales/SWNS.COM (via Metro)|
The revamped bathroom now has made it easier for Shannon to take care of Ailey. But since getting the bath, she does not approve of her little brother being in the tub with her.” She does not want to share, but the lights definitely piqued her brother’s interest. Interestingly, Shannon notes that a lot of people who helped the family have joked “that they can’t wait to come round and have a bath.”