It’s hard to avoid the ads for seniors’ scooters. “Call now!” And we’ve all heard about the dependability of a certain adult diaper. These, however, are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to assistive devices for elderly people. Some very clever entrepreneurs are constantly introducing new products designed to makes seniors’ lives safer and more pleasant in any number of ways.
Going room by room, let’s start with “powered toilet lifts.” You’d likely never think of such a product – until you need one. Then you’d likely not think of much else. Toileting is usually a necessity handled privately from not long after we’re trained as toddlers. Losing that independence due to physical infirmity can take a psychological toll. This simple assistive device, however, is on the market, ready to go, and can extend a person’s independence in the bathroom long after his body cannot easily manage toileting.
For a senior dealing with Parkinson’s disease or another ailment that causes tremors, the kitchen or dining room might prove daunting come mealtime. Feeding oneself, another core component of independence, might seem an entirely new challenge as tiny tremors prevent steady hold of utensils. Specially designed weighted utensils, however, can help steady a diner’s hand.
There’s a great variety of assist rails to help an older body get in and out of bed. Keeping in mind that safety bed rails may pose a hazard to someone with dementia or who is otherwise confused, an assist rail can be wonderfully helpful for someone needing an extra handhold. Some models include tray tables to make it easy to dine in bed or to serve as a small desk. There are models that include storage pouches for a TV remote, medicines, magazines, a phone – what have you.
For someone with arthritis who always loved setting up the card table in the living room for a good game of bridge, holding a full hand can leave a card shark thinking more about the pain in her fingers than what suit to lead with. No need to give up a favorite pastime, though, when there’s an inexpensive cardholder for sale.
If infirmities of aging begin to creep in, there is no need to simply allow them to lessen the quality of life. Chances are some clever inventor has already devised some assistive device to address a particular need. They may not get as much attention as the “ShamWow” or iPads, but start looking and you’ll be amazed by what’s out there.