Silk Slide Sheets

Before we made our sturdy slide sheets, we tried a ton of different options. Obviously we started with the bog standard NHS supplied nylon slide sheets. I wrote in the slide sheet make a whole bit about how much they suck so I won’t bang on about it again here. But to expand on that, in the spirit of the failures post, I will just talk about the slide sheets I bought first and why.

I bought silk sheets from soak and sleep, on the premise that they would:

  • be thin and light enough to leave in-situ but not cause pressure problems or bunch up
  • reduce friction and increase slide while being strong
  • no bin bag crinkle
  • improve the dry floatation surface of the roho insert (efficacy reduces as more fabric is interleaved between you and the roho)
  • be less than the cost of the 4-way turning linens recommended by the OT (£150 a set)
  • be actually nice to sleep on

And I was totally right. They did all of those things and the sheets were of very high quality. (Soak and Sleep don’t actually sell the single flat silk sheets any more. The closest I can find is this double fitted silk sheet £60 ) The strength of silk means the sheets never tore during moving and handling/lifting, unlike the (actually excellent otherwise) cotton sheets we usually have. BUT! AND THEN! ;)

We started getting more care cover, which is great and means I don’t die, but it also means other people started doing our washing. Now, if you have carers you know that you just have to resign yourself to them destroying your stuff every few months*. Even if you ask them not to, they will do it to be nice! One time a very good carer (really, not kidding! she was aces!) carefully, as a gift to me, gathered all my silk blouses and cashmere jumpers together and then unaccountably boil washed them for 3 hours at 90 degrees in Dettol. It’s good for the soul, I think. Hold your possessions lightly. But anyway, you can guess what follows: the carers did… something (WHAT?) to these sheets. I guess they boiled them. I was washing the silk sheets at 30 degrees with a Bactisan addition and mild detergent and they all swore blind that’s what they did too, but in any case, within about three months of carer intervention, all the silk sheets began to fall apart: ripped, distintegrated, died.

So I had to go back to the drawing board and came up with the super slide sheets, which are much sturdier and can be boil washed with impunity, so are actually an improvement and much much cheaper, so hurray! Failure can be generative.


* This is actually unavoidable and a consequence of the sheer VOLUME of people that come through the house. It's really not anything to do with the carers; they are just being normal. Think about it. Even if each carer makes a single solitary error or breaks a single thing in a whole year, if you have 50 different carers in that year (common), that's something getting wrecked pretty much every week.