10 Daily Living Aids for Seniors That Make Life Easierby Reading 1 Min
Aging comes with its challenges, and the body may not function the way it used to. With impaired vision, reduced flexibility, and weaker joints and muscles, mobility issues come into play. However, this does not mean that life has to get harder. There’s a world of independent living aids that can help. Mobility aids for the elderly include assistive devices and self-care equipment that make it easier to age in place.
10 Daily Living Mobility Aids for the Elderly
Socks and shoes aids
1. Sock aids
Simple daily tasks such as getting dressed can challenge the elderly who may have joint flexibility or back pain issues. Nifty little devices allow your loved ones to slip on their socks and shoes without having to bend down too far and risk exertion.
Sock aids are handy gadgets where you slip your sock onto a frame, lower it onto the floor, and simply slide your feet into the sock. Many durable and lightweight models in the market save a lot of time and frustration from fumbling about while getting dressed.
2. Long-handled shoehorn
Once your socks are on, there's the challenge of putting on your shoes. A long-handled shoe horn offers the perfect solution. With models now made of lightweight steel, these shoe horns are heavy-duty and can take wear and tear. Some versatile models even work great for taking your socks off.
Aids for moving out and about
3. Step stools
Seniors with mobility issues face the challenge of safely getting in and out of the bed or the bathtub. One of the aids for daily living that must be on your home safety checklist for seniors is a step stool. Step stools are the ideal assistive devices that allow them to move about on their own safely.
A bedside safety step allows your loved ones complete independence while getting in and out of bed. Similarly, the bathroom is one of the most high-risk places in the house for falls. Installing a wide, non-slip bathtub step with grab rails will reduce the risk of falls.
4. Cane seat
While moving out and about, the elderly will need rest every now and then. This is especially true for those suffering from joint pains or arthritis where standing for long periods can strain the body. While your loved ones may enjoy running errands as part of independent living, they will need a seat to catch their breath. A cane chair is a portable lightweight walking assistive device that features a small retractable seat. This makes trips to the grocery store or a walk to the park a whole lot easier and worry-free.
5. Jar opener
Weak muscles or wrist and elbow issues due to arthritis can make hand twisting motions painful and hard while simply just trying to open a jar or can. Gadgets such as easy twist jar openers can take away the effort involved and prevent the hazards such as slipping or pulling a muscle.
6. Grabber stick
Among other products for the elderly living alone is the grabber stick. This nifty little tool is incredibly versatile when it comes to reaching for things. Whether it’s bending down to pick something up or reaching up high, these actions get harder as we age. A grabber stick helps your loved ones feel more independent, allowing them to perform these tasks with ease. These sticks come with adjustable and retractable handles.
7. Dressing Stick
A dressing stick is a versatile tool that allows seniors with limited mobility to perform various dressing tasks such as pulling up their underpants, putting on shorts, or getting jackets over their shoulders. Back or shoulder pains no longer have to limit your loved ones while they live independently.
Grooming and hygiene gadgets
8. Toothbrush handle
A toothbrush handle is a smart tool that allows your loved ones to grip their toothbrush without feeling the aches and pains of arthritis or handgrip issues. It is an ergonomic, soft, built-up handle that allows for a firm grip on any narrow object. You can also use it to grip cutlery or other kitchen tools.
9. Foot cleaning brush
A foot cleaning brush is an ideal home aid for the elderly when stiff back muscles or hip mobility issues make it hard for them to bend over and clean their feet. A long handle and ergonomic design allow them to complete the task without bending down or straining their back muscles.
Risers and Ramps
10. Riser step
Seniors who may have challenges lifting their feet high enough to climb steps will find a riser step very handy. This sturdy stool helps make steps shallower, allowing for ease of climbing. So, whether it’s hip pains, sore knee joints, balance issues, or post-surgery weakness, your loved one will still be able to overcome a steep stair with a riser step.
A wide range of daily living aids for the elderly may confuse you with what’s necessary to buy. It’s best to identify your loved one’s specific needs and abilities before you purchase a product.
Vince Baiera is the founder of step2health, a mobility aids and wellness company for older adults. He is a former ICU Nurse of the Cleveland Clinic and Duke University Hospital in the Cardiac ICU. With years of working on the frontlines, Vince noticed the struggles of older adults and people with mobility issues that became an impediment for both patients and their caretakers. He then designed and created the patented product, Step2Bed (and its variants) that helps seniors and those with mobility issues safely get in and out of bed. His philosophy concerning aging is to plan ahead and start with simple home and life modifications to avoid being overwhelmed at retirement.