Speed up bathroom time with the "grocery.bag.trick"

Ah, toileting. It's a mixed blessing for those families whose kids are semi-continent and wearing pull-on style undergarments. 

There is the obvious good, which is very, VERY good! It's definitely worth the hassle. Success promotes independence and self-confidence. And it's beyond wonderful to kids and caregivers not to have to deal with, er, unpleasant clean-ups. Enough said.

Then there is the incovenience during those times we need to change out wet pull-on, especially if  foot orthotics are part of the mix. It can become a rather involved to remove the shoes and orthotics in order to take pants off so clean pull-ons can go on. Because then everything after the pull-ons must be replaced in a very lengthy ordeal: pants, orthotics, shoes. For anyone who does this multiple times a day, you know how much time it adds to toileting.


Aha! "grocery.bag.trick!" to the rescue! By sliding the child's foot (orthotics, shoes, and all) into a plastic grocery bag, you now have a delightfully slippery package that easily slides through the pant leg, provided the the hem is wide enough or the fabric has enough stretch.

Sock, AFO, and shoe are all wrapped inside this plastic bag.
Nothing has been removed from the foot.

You can do this one leg at a time if you like. Off comes one pant leg, on goes one leg of the pull-on, back on goes the leg of the pant. Move the bag to the second foot and repeat: pants off, pull-on on, pants on. The child does need to stay seated through this, because the bag is slippery and could cause a fall if she tries to walk with it covering her shoe. Do not allow the child to walk with a bag over the shoe!

Pants, even denim jeans or most knit leggings,
slide off and on over the slippery plastic bag.


If a single bag is confusing, try using a separate bag for each foot, removing the entire pair of pants, put the pull-on over both feet, then put on both legs of the pants. Remove both bags before standing.


This technique has saved us countless hours over the years and reduces the chance for bunching socks inside hurriedly-applied orthotics. When our daughter was small enough to fit into pull-on style underpants with Velcro side closures, life was much simpler. Why such garments are not available (at least at a cost Medicaid is willing to cover) for teenagers or adults, I do not know. But it allows us to exercise our creativity...



And so, the grocery.bag.trick was born. Use it in good health!

6 comments:

David Selover said...

K.I.S.S. Wow How beautifully simple solution. I am sure it took years of college and many independent evaluations in order to have this solution...(insert Sarcasm) Bravo!! You should post this on instructables!

Rose-Marie said...

David, I'm glad you like this solution to a time-consuming problem. Yep, simple is always good! Your comment made me chuckle--thanks for that!

Clara-Leigh said...

You just changed my life for the better AGAIN!! GOD BLESS YOU!!!!!

Rose-Marie said...

I'm so glad, Clara Leigh! Here I had even debated whether to post this or not, not sure if it would benefit anyone. So glad it's userful!!

Orthotics Shoes said...

No doubt! Great idea, but orthotics can really make a difference..!

Rose-Marie said...

You are absolutely right, Orthotics Shoes! Not only do the size and style of orthotics make a difference as to whether this is possible (it works fine with the AFO style my daughter wears), but the width of the pant leg matters too.