Over time I’ve discovered an array of different aids that make life easier around the house. Ma has mobility issues because of her arthritis, osteoporosis, frozen shoulders etc etc. She users her wheeled walker (Cyril) to get around the house and a wheelchair when we go out.
Ma spends most of her time in her bedroom sitting on the side of the bed reading or listening to the radio. To make it easier to get up and down and out of bed, we have an ‘L’ shaped bed-rail that goes under the mattress. Ma wouldn’t be able to get up without it. It’s very sturdy. I’ve seen these at Bunnings or you can get them from ‘mobility’ shops. I have also a different design of bed rail at Aldi (usually only once a year).
As Ma suffers from incontinence a waterproof pad on the mattress is a must, just in case of accidents. The Conni brand makes a bed pad that holds 2,000 mls for up to 8 hours. That’s huge peace of mind! When Ma had a UTI she was running like a tap and they were my saving grace. They are also machine washable. I ordered one online but I know chemists stock them and I got my second one at Aldi. They also manufacture pads for chairs.
Ma’s hands are crooked with arthritis and she hasn’t much strength in them at all. She started to have difficulty turning on and off her bedside lamp. I now have a touch lamp in her room which is so much easier. Much as I don’t like Bunnings, they do have a good variety of lamps and railings and a few other aids. The only downside of the touch lamp is the bulbs don’t last very long because they have to be ‘dimmer’ bulbs.
With her delirium/dementia her sense of time has been affected. She finds it difficult to read her clock radio and even though she listens to the news, she doesn’t always hear the time. I’d ring her at 11am and she’d think it was 3pm. She would get very upset. I found a great talking clock at Vision Australia. She can push the button on the top and the clock tells her the time. It also has a very clear face which she can easily read. She loves her clock!
This winter she couldn’t stand the weight of her woollen blanket. It was just too heavy for her to pull up. I got her a couple of light weight fleece blankets which keep her lovely and warm. The only downside is the cats love padding on them because they are so soft and cuddly.
These items make life much easier for Ma and help to ensure that she keeps some of her independence.
- Mobility shops have a great array of aids that make life easier, unfortunately they are also usually quite expensive, so check your prices. Aldi have some great items from time to time and Bunnings stock a few things also.
- Conni bed pads are fantastic. They are also good for people who sweat excessively.
- Search for ideas on the net: ‘mobility aids’, ‘independent living’ will give you a good selection to start with. Chemists usually stock some items or can probably order something in for you.