“A person's a person, no matter how small.”
Welcome to my launch page for the Dressing Wand, a child-friendly dressing stick.
Please read on to find out where this much needed product's story began and where I hope to see it go in the future!
The initial idea and design for
The Dressing Wand was inspired by a surprisingly unmet need.
In summer of 2018 my patient R.M. needed a dressing stick, so I began what I assumed would be a simple search for a
pediatric-sized dressing stick. I was surprised to find that there were no options commercially available that were appropriate for his small hands and stature. My inquiries on occupational therapy forums yielded recommendations to home-make one or cut down an adult-sized one. I did wind up
home-making a dressing stick for R.M. to suit his immediate need and from that original design I have become determined to develop a widely available dressing stick that is designed and sized with kids in mind.
According to the Center for Disease Control’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network (ADDM), approximately 1 in 323 children have been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy (CP) and most (75-85%) are affected by spastic CP (CDC, 2019). Spastic CP affects the quality and consistency of movement, which in turn affects a child’s participation in all meaningful activities of daily living. Developmentally, children should be able to doff all pull-off clothing by 2-3 years old and don all clothing by 4-5 years old. The stiff, awkward movements of spastic CP are very limiting during dressing. Therefore, even if they have arrived cognitively at the developmental stage, they are delayed by their restricted movement.
Children with CP require a solution that increases their reach and its effectiveness during dressing. Such a solution does exist in the many iterations of the Dressing Stick, but unfortunately these often need to be cut down or otherwise modified in order to be manageable by children with little hands and smaller bodies. They need a solution that is specifically designed with their needs and motivations in mind.
My initial mission was to fulfill the need of my patient R.M. to manage his shoes, socks and pants with increased independence. It has since evolved into a mission to help all children with CP and other diagnoses that affect their reach during dressing. The Dressing Wand will be a durable, portable, and cleanable dressing stick sized for the little bodies and hands of children who are ready to dress themselves. It will provide immediate facilitation of improved agency, confidence and independence for children during a key developmental stage. This is a product that needs a future!
Putting a dressing stick that's
"my size" into the hands of the children who need it most.
The Dressing Wand
The Dressing Wand is a finalized and functional prototype, ready for the next stage of development. It is currently constructed of a wooden dowel and Sugru: Moldable Glue or plastic accessories. It has been used by my original client, R.M., over the past year and a half and has contributed to him gaining momentum in independent dressing. He is now able to doff his pants and socks and don his pants with minimal assistance.
My immediate plans for the Dressing Wand include:
1) Completing the Trademark Registration process.
2) Starting an LLC to support the future of The Dressing Wand (TM).
3) Identifying a lawyer that specializes in product liability and/or trademark and patent law to serve as my registered agent.
3) Acquiring product liability insurance.
4) Moving forward with my design to manufacture and production partner MorphoMFG to begin the process of bringing The Dressing Wand (TM) to life!
5) Crowdfunding via Kickstarter and then IndieGoGo.
6) Marketing marathon to spread the word that
The Dressing Wand (TM) has arrived and is ready for the world!