- There is more than one way to do everything. When the way you did something yesterday doesn’t work today, stop, regroup, and think of a different way.
- If your dominant hand has issues, become at least partially ambidextrous. Do more with non dominant hand. Play apps like solitaire changing the dominant hand setting and use the non dominant hand.
- If you have a weakened dominant hand, try spring open scissors and kitchen shears.
- Use a power toothbrush.
- Keep hand wipes around.
- Look for tools and gadgets for people with arthritis or stroke. Some of these will also help certain MS symptoms.
- Have issues with writing? Try a heavier and thicker pen/pencil. String, present tape, sport tape, and pencil grips can all be used to thicken a regular pen/pencil.
- A TV or other device on very low volume can act as a white noise sleep aid.
- If you have a stronger time of day, plan to do more of your tasks then, if possible. For example, showering at night may be easier than showering in the morning.
- If you have a problem with an arm or leg, put that limb in clothes first.
- To wear pierced earrings with a weakened hand, look for lever or hinged backs.
- If you have an arm in a cast or sling: take a t-shirt and cut top of sleeve, shoulder and all the way through neck trim. Add some sticky velcro tabs along cut to close the shirt. This makes changing tops easier and less painful.
- Have issues with a hand? Try elastic shoelaces in shoes or slip on shoes.
- Do you use a rollator? Not only can you ‘carry’ items on the seat, but you can hang bags with loops on the rollator handles. If the brake handles have a piece on the end that sticks up, you can hang loop handles there as well. Groceries, purse, snacks, and drink bottles with a strap loop all can be carried.
- Upright vacuums and laundry hampers can be carried on a rollator seat.
- Need to get up on a tall bed? Use a locked rollator or other sturdy item to help you push into sitting on the bed.
- Have a limp or a foot that drags after awhile? Use a shopping cart as a mobility aid when shopping. You can even park next to the cart return and use a cart on the way into the store too.
- Look for 2 in 1 or even 3 in 1 formulas that you use. An example is shampoo and conditioner combined.
- Use pump dispensers in the shower.
- Shower chairs can make a large shower manageable, offer a place to sit, and be a ledge for shampoo, conditioner, scrubber, and body wash.
- A shower wand with an on/off switch and a hose long enough to reach a seat can make it easier to sit and wash and clean the shower,
- Grab bars – at least one in and one ouside the shower can help getting in and out of the shower.
- For drying off, use a quick dry soft towel. Start with it draped like a scarf.
- Buy foods already chopped/prepped when possible. Don’t forget to check the frozen foods section. Onions, peppers, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, avocado, fruits, and stir fry mixes all come chopped in the freezer section.
- Look for quick to cook/prepare versions of foods. 90 second microwave rice really speeds up meal preparation.
- Buy your groceries online for drive up pickup or delivery. This saves a lot of time and energy! Watch for pick up or delivery fees and minimum order amounts.
- Use an app for pantry item meal use, plan meals, make a grocery shopping list, and even link to online ordering.
- Use an electric can opener.
- List everything you need the destination to have (roll in shower?) and what features will not work if there (stairs only access?).
- Book with the location, not a national site.
- Check out pictures and descriptions carefully.
- If you see a handicap accessible label, verify their label definition.
- If you are renting a condo or house, check if you will need to turn on/off any utilities and if needed their locations. Could you deal with an underground, crawl space, or basement water valve?
- Contact the owner/manager with any questions.
- Document evrything and take with you.
- Check out the local hospitality and accessibility laws.