Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Faves Roundup

Today as I was using the equipment at the new job (still love it!) I got to thinking about how foreign all these object seemed to me at first, and now they're second nature. Though they have some at the GreatRep which are new to me as well (when I saw "nosey cup" on the dining room protocol list, I thought "WTF??"). Turns out they're cups with a cutout for your nose so you don't have to tilt your head back at all to drink from them. They're good for people who can't/won't tilt their heads and can't/won't drink from straws. See:

The things I'm listing as faves are mostly for in-home use, though you can have them in facilities too, especially in a family member's apartment or room.

For mobility challenged (if someone is missing a leg, or just plain getting old, or whatever):
This is my favorite kind of bathtub/shower bench. I like it because when you put it in a bathtub, it sticks out onto the regular floor so that all someone has to do is back up to it, sit down, and you can swing their legs up and into the tub after they're seated. Then you tuck the shower curtain around it, and use a handheld shower nozzle to wash them. To be extra nice, put down a hand towel so it's not cold on their bare hiney.

Also for mobility challenged people, this seems really simple but it's awesome if they can't bend down very well; it's just a little half tube with a rope on it, and you put the sock on it, then drop it on down, slide the foot into the sock, and pull it up. I had a lady with a recent leg amputation who used this so she could put on her sock without falling over, and I was amazed by how much easier it made her days!

For incontinence, if you have somewhere you can put it safely so that no one will get into it and hurt themselves (it really doesn't get hot, but it's an electric appliance that involves moisture) a wipe warmer is great. That's always the worst part of changing and toileting someone, especially in the middle of the night - coming in, taking off their warm blankets, and then swabbing them down with a cold wipe; no wonder they get mad! These are made for baby wipes but you can put washcloths in them as well, for cleaning hands and faces, or if you're earth friendly enough to use washcloths for pericare.

Also for incontinence, washable cloth waterproof pads are a must for beds. They're sturdy enough to last a long time and are strong enough to use to reposition people once they're lying down.

Last incontinence thing: Bag Balm. For barrier cream. Seems to work the very best, I don't know why. It's cheap, too!

Specifically for people with Alzheimer's/Dementia: a picture phone. You program it and put little photos on the buttons so that when they want to call someone, all they do is pick up the phone and push the picture of who they want to speak to. I think it amplifies the sound too, so they can hear you better.

Ta da! My favorite home medical care products. I don't have any specific brands to recommend, aside from Bag Balm. Also, if you need some of the durable equipment, your county might have a medical equipment bank. Mine does, and I'm sure it's a big help. It's also a good place to get rid of crutches, wheelchairs, shower chairs, etc. that you don't need anymore, if you've got them cluttering up your house.

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