Solve caregiving challenges using everyday products
As a caregiver, you’re often forced to get creative to solve everyday challenges. We found new ways to use 6 household products to improve your older adult’s life (and yours too!).
Make a personal call system out of a wireless doorbell
If your older adult needs help when getting up or moving around, you might feel chained to their side in case they need you.
Instead of needing to constantly check on them, try using an inexpensive wireless doorbell like this one as a personal call system. Your older adult keeps the button and you can plug the chime part into an electrical outlet near you.
Keep things close at hand with a TV table and serving tray
Older adult with limited mobility usually stay in one spot for most of the day. If that place isn’t next to a convenient side table, it might be challenging to keep necessities close at hand.
Get a lightweight, inexpensive TV side table like this one and place a serving tray with raised edges like this one on top. We like adding the tray because the raised edges keep things from falling onto the floor.
Encourage hydration with a water pitcher
It’s important for older adults to stay hydrated, especially in hot weather. But many either don’t remember to drink water or can’t remember how much they’ve had during the day.
Get a small water pitcher like this one and fill it daily with the amount of water recommended by their doctor. Both you and your older adult will know how much water was consumed by how much is left in the pitcher.
Stay comfortable with an indoor thermometer
Older adult bodies aren’t as sensitive to temperature as younger bodies. That’s why it’s not obvious to them when it’s really hot or really cold.
An indoor thermometer like this one helps by displaying the current indoor temperature in large, easy-to-read numbers. With the temperature clearly displayed, there’s also less resistance when you ask them to add or remove a layer of clothing.
Soothe stubborn arthritis pain with stick-on heat patches
Arthritis pain is the worst! Many times, pain medication, creams, and rubs can’t completely relieve the deep ache.
When all else fails and they’re still in pain, try using air-activated heat patches (here’s one type) to provide hours of steady warmth to soothe the painful area. Keep in mind that older adults are less sensitive to feeling overheated skin and at greater risk for burns.
It’s best to not use the adhesive so the heat patches don’t touch bare skin. Try wrapping them over the painful area on the outside of their clothes using cloth or gauze. As always, check with their doctor to make sure that heat patches won’t react badly with current treatments or other health conditions.
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