Maintaining independence as long as possible is important to the mental and emotional health of seniors. Once the sense of being able to care for oneself is lost, seniors may suffer from depression and negative feelings. One of the best ways to stay independent is to have tools on hand to assist in taking care of daily living activities such as being able to get dressed, rising and lowering from a chair, bed or toilet seat and remaining mobile.
As we age, we often lose manual dexterity, ease of movement, balance, overall strength and the freedom that comes with being able to take care of our daily tasks. What once was a simple activity may become difficult or nearly impossible.
Fortunately, there are many products on the market today to assist the elderly population in completing these tasks. There are products to make the home safer, assist with chores and even assist with daily activities that we used to take for granted, like opening jars or getting dressed.
For the home, there are adaptive products to help seniors avoid falls while getting in and out of bed, and bed rails to keep them safe while in bed.
If you have difficulty rising from a seated position, there are lift chairs with a gentle push up, and several types of lift cushions that are portable and will still help lift some of your weight as you rise.
The bathroom is one of the most frequent fall locations for seniors. A raised toilet seat can help keep you safe by adding a few inches to the height of the toilet seat. You can also purchase a toilet seat frame that has arms to provide support, or have adaptive grab bars or rails installed in your bathroom.
There’s even a power lift seat that provides a gentle push to help you stand up from a toilet sitting position. It also has arms for support.
For bathing, there are several bath seats for the shower and tub, all designed with safety and convenience in mind.
The lose of manual dexterity often makes dressing difficult. When your fingers don’t work quite as well as they used to, buttons and zippers become a frustration. Luckily, there are several dressing aids for seniors help you get dressed independently. Products to assist with buttoning buttons, pulling zippers and even fastening jewelry are now available.
Since bending over is frequently difficult for seniors, there are long handled shoehorns that help get shoes on, and devices that hold socks into place while you slide your foot in. There are “dressing sticks” that serve a variety functions from grabbing a sleeve, to acting as a shoehorn to help with dressing. Elastic shoelaces help reduce bending by eliminating the need to tie shoes.
Around the home, the handy “reach stick” serves many purposes for general reaching without bending, to reaching for items on high shelves, to helping clean or remove things from your path.
A simple Internet search will result in a multitude of products to assist in daily living activities. Use these tools to make things easier for yourself or your loved ones.