Stroke survivors can re-learn to dress themselves
After a stroke, it’s important for seniors to re-learn the tasks of daily living. One everyday task is the ability to dress themselves.
It may be a big challenge at first, but there are techniques that make it easier to get dressed even if one side of the body is weak.
We explain why it’s important to re-learn this everyday skill and share two videos with helpful tips for independent dressing after stroke.
Why is independent dressing important?
Being able to dress on their own will give your older adult a self-esteem boost and helps with their overall recovery.
They’ll gain independence and feel more in control of their lives. It also gives you a bit of a break.
Re-learning to dress independently is also a form of therapy. Using the affected side of their body as much as possible will help build strength and re-train the brain.
Helpful videos demonstrate techniques for dressing after stroke
In these two clear and helpful videos, a stroke survivor demonstrates how to put on two styles of shirt and two styles of pants when one side of the body is weak.
Older adults may need to go slow and take breaks. This activity is mentally and physically challenging, especially at first.
In the video about shirts:
- Short-sleeve t-shirt (watch from beginning)
- Long-sleeve button-down shirt (at 2 min 34 sec) – put on and take off
In the video about pants:
- Elastic waist pants using 2 different methods – using hands only (watch from beginning) and using a reaching/grabbing tool for help (at 2 min 53 sec)
- Denim jeans with belt (at 5 min 32 sec)
Additional tips for independent dressing
When they first start, getting dressed will be slow and frustrating. Encourage your older adult to take their time and not demand too much of themselves. It will get easier and faster with time and practice.
Additional tips for older adults:
- Stay seated while dressing. It’s safer and saves energy.
- Use something sturdy for support when standing to pull up pants. It’s easy to get off balance during this step.
- Choose loose-fitting clothing with fabrics that stretch. Start with larger, looser clothes and gradually step down to regular size as dressing becomes easier.
- Consider getting adaptive clothing that’s designed with special features like velcro, zipper pulls, or grab loops to make it easier to get dressed.
Recommended for you:
- Stroke Therapy Exercises for Upper and Lower Body [Video]
- Buck & Buck Specialized Senior Clothing Solves Dressing Problems
- TIA Is a Warning Sign of Stroke and Vascular Dementia
By DailyCaring Editorial Team
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