Gifts Ideas for mobility challenged

Gift Ideas for the Mobility Challenged

Gifts Ideas for mobility challenged

Looking for the perfect Christmas gift that could truly aide in greater independence, safety and accessibility for someone you love who has challenges moving freely through life? Maybe your loved one is in a wheelchair or power scooter uses a walker or cane. Perhaps they are simply growing older and need a little help moving about. Maybe their disability has left them with a lack of mobility due to a stroke, heart issues, traumatic injury, genetic disability, or from a progressive disease.  Here is a list of possible gift ideas:

Automatic Door Opener 

Door Opener Wall Switches

Installed in your home to make entry and exit easy as a push of a button.

Stairlift 

Stairlift

Can be installed on your existing indoor or outdoor staircase to give a power ride up and downstairs

Power Lift Chair 

Lift Chair

A multi-positioning recliner that comes in up to 10 sizes that lets the user change positions with an easy control from sitting, napping, lying flat, watching TV, to assist in standing. Give them their new favorite chair.

Wheelchair Ramps 

Wheelchair Ramps

Come in various materials to give independent access anywhere there is a change in elevation.

Portable Ramps 

Portable Ramp

Can be folded and taken with you to provide access where there is no permanent ramp.

Wheelchair Vertical Platform Lift 

Platform Lift

A mini wheelchair elevator that can be installed in your home to access another level inside or outside.

Valet Seat

Valet Seat for Trucks

A power lift seat that lowers and swivels to aide in entering a vehicle.

Walk in Tub

SafewayStepWalk-InTubTub-Door

There are various models that allow safe independent access to showering or bathing. Give the gift of privacy and independence. There is even a Safeway Walk-in Door that can add a door to your existing tub.

Bath Safety Products

Grab Bars

Grab bars, sliding shower chairs and toilet seats all make thoughtful gifts to make the bathroom safer and more private.

Transportable Commode/Shower Chair 

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For the person on the go, this foldable chair can double as a shower chair or commode that travels.

Stocking Stuffers

Reacher or grabber, bedside tray, a hanging organizer for wheelchair or powerlift chair.

Remember that your loved one will not only enjoy the gift that adds to their independence and accessibility, but they will treasure time with you.

Accessible Solutions for Bathrooms

The Most Dangerous Room for the Mobility Challenged- Bathrooms

Bathrooms are usually the smallest room in the house, but they can be the biggest safety risk for those with any type of mobility challenge. Most likely, there’s a dangerous combination of wet tile floors, slippery tubs, difficulty getting up from a seated position after toileting and cramped space. Add to that mix, the loss of privacy and independence when help is required for those with mobility limitations. The bathroom may be a necessity but it is not a room to be looked forward to by the person who needs help or the caregiver. The bathroom can be an accident waiting to happen (in more ways than one!)

There are some simple changes that can be made in your bathroom to make it easier to access, safer and even offer more independence to use:

Grab Bars

Grab Bars– There is a wide selection of grab bars which can be installed in strategic places near the toilet and tub to aide in getting up and down, as well as having something to hold on to instead of falling.

Shower Chairs

Shower chairs– Multiple models are available to aide in getting safely in the shower or tub—including benches which allow the patient to sit down outside the tub and slide into the tub while seated.

Toilet Accessories

Toilet Accessories– There are portable bedside commodes, raised toilet seats, over commode bars which have stable arm rests to aide in standing up.

Walk-In Bath Tubs

Walk In Tubs– These are great for the safest baths. There is no need to raise legs over the tub. Just walk in, close the door and sit down.

Patient Lifts– When the patient has little to no mobility, a lift can be installed to make transferring to the toilet or bath safer and easier on both patient and caregiver.

Bath Remodels– There are times, the existing bathroom has so many issues for the mobility challenged person, that an Accessibility Professional needs to be involved in making major changes in your bathroom.

Don’t forget to place slip resistant mats or stickers in your bathtub, spray air freshener above toilet instead of on the floor causing a fall risk, and remove throw rugs which can trip someone up. Take a good look at your bathroom to see what small or larger changes need to be made. Get the input from an Occupational Therapist or Accessibility Professional for personalized input on making your bathroom less dangerous.

bathroom safety

Guide To Preventing Bathroom Injuries: Part 2

In the last post, we discussed some basic bathroom safety tips designed to maximize mobility and elderly independence. Every year, over two million senior citizens visit the emergency room for injuries caused by a fall, and it’s important to have an understanding of all the ways to make your bathroom safer in order to determine which tips are right for you. Here’s part two of our guide to preventing bathroom injuries.

Ensure Adequate Seating
Having enough places to sit is essential to creating a handicap accessible bathroom that those will all mobility levels can safely and easily use. Adding a seat somewhere around your sink or vanity area gives those with limited mobility the option to sit down when performing everyday tasks like brushing their teeth. Similarly, installing some sort of shower seating allows you to sit down if you need to take a short break or need to perform a certain task easier. When it comes down to it, optimizing your bathroom’s seating options is one of the best ways to prevent falls and other accidents.

Don’t Neglect Lighting
Having adequate lighting is essential to preventing falls, especially in the bathroom. Make sure that your bathroom’s lights are bright enough to illuminate all areas of your bathroom. Adding a mirror can help reflect more light and illuminate areas that the lights may not naturally reach. And of course, make sure to install some sort of night light as well. When using the bathroom during the middle of the night, turning the full lights on can hurt the eyes of those with light sensitivities, and offering a simple nighttime solution like a night light ensures maximum safety and comfort.

Raise Toilet Height
Finally, if you or your loved one with limited mobility have trouble going from a standing to a sitting position and back again, raising the height of your toilet by even a few inches can drastically help to improve mobility and reduce the chance of a bathroom fall.

Ultimately, understanding these bathroom safety tips can help you or your loved one with limited mobility stay as safe and comfortable in the bathroom as possible. For more information about how to maximize elderly independence, contact AccessNSM.

bathroom safety

Guide To Preventing Bathroom Injuries: Part 1

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disability is associated with limited mobility. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for those with limited mobility to complete necessary tasks, such as using the bathroom. Each year, nearly 235,000 people experience injuries in the bathroom, according to the United States Center For Disease Control and Prevention. Fortunately, there are many precautions that those with limited mobility can take to minimize their chances of sustaining injuries in the bathroom. Here’s part one of our guide to preventing bathroom injuries.

Invest In Grab Bars
First, grab bars are some of the most popular devices designed to enhance bathroom safety and mobility. In fact, according to HomeAdvisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report, home service professionals say the top aging-in-place projects they’ve been hired to do include installing grab bars (71%) and adding entryway wheelchair ramps (54%). When installing bathroom grab bars, make sure to use solid screws as opposed to simply nailing them into the drywall. And of course, always test them for stability and durability by putting your weight on them. They need to be able to truly prevent you from falling and should not budge at all.

Avoid Slippery Floors
It’s easy to fall and injure yourself on floors that are slick and slippery. Make sure to put down some sort of absorbent mat outside your shower or bathtub and do your best to keep your floors dry. It’s a good idea to get mats that have a non-slip grip on the bottom, and of course, make sure it’s large enough to keep excess water contained and your bathroom floors dry.

Add a Walk-In Shower
If you currently have a tub with a high edge, it definitely increases the risk of slipping and falling while entering and exiting. A safer option is to eliminate the need to step over any type of edge and opt for an edgeless shower. Walk-in showers are much safer and reduce the risk of falls related to getting in and out.

Ultimately, understanding these bathroom safety tips can help you prevent injuries and maximize the safety of your bathroom. Keep an eye out for the next post, where we’ll discuss even more bathroom safety tips designed to optimize mobility and elderly independence.

handicap automatic door opener

3 Benefits of Investing In Automatic Door Openers For Your Home

handicap automatic door opener

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disability is associated with limited mobility. And while there are countless devices designed to help patients achieve full mobility, one of the most difficult aspects of getting around your home in an electric wheelchair often involves opening and closing doors. If you’re struggling to get through doorways due to your limited mobility, it’s important to understand all the advantages that come with installing handicap automatic door openers. Here are just a few benefits of investing in handicap automatic door openers for your home.

Ease of Use
Automatic door openers do come in multiple models and designs, but for the most part, they’re incredibly simple to use and maintain. They typically operate using either motion sensor technology or with a simple remote control or button. Whichever your preference, rest assured that as long as the doorway meets ADA door requirements, your wheelchair will comfortably fit through without any extra hassle or maneuvering on your part.

Preservation of Privacy
The difficulty that many people experience when opening and closing doors in an electric wheelchair often leads them to do it only when necessary. This can negatively impact privacy, and everybody deserves to feel comfortable in their home. Installing handicap automatic door openers throughout your home can ensure that you always have a comfortable level of privacy in your home.

Flexibility During Installation
Finally, many people are often deterred from installing devices designed to improve mobility simply because they assume the installation process is difficult. However, the professionals that install these devices in homes typically have years of experience doing so and are fully trained on the latest safety procedures and accessibility standards, so you can rest assured that they’ll be in and out of your home in just a few hours, and your device will be up and running and ready for use.

Ultimately, approximately 6.8 million Americans use assistive devices to aid their mobility, and handicap automatic door openers are just one device that makes lives easier every single day. For more information about devices designed to improve mobility, contact Access NSM.

handicap bathroom requirements

Your Guide To Transforming Any Bathroom To Meet Handicap Bathroom Requirements

handicap bathroom requirements

Many people think that transforming their bathroom to be handicap accessible requires significant time, money, and other resources. But each year, nearly 235,000 people experience injuries in the bathroom, according to the CDC, and taking some small steps to make sure your bathroom meets accessibility standards can make all the difference in transforming it into a room that people of all abilities feel safe and comfortable using. Here’s a quick guide to help you understand the specifics of the ADA’s handicap bathroom requirements.

Space
Before we discuss specific bathroom accessibility products, it’s important to address the issue of space. Handicap bathrooms must be able to accommodate a wheelchair rotating 90 degrees, which is typically about 60 inches in diameter. Keep in mind that certain fixtures may be accounted for in this required space, i.e., if a bathroom counter is high enough off the floor and has empty space under it that would allow for a wheelchair, that space can count toward the 60 inches.

Toilet
The height of a toilet seat should be between 17 and 19 inches to comfortably accommodate a wheelchair. There should also be 60 inches of space around the toilet for wheelchair rotation purposes. The Balance states that an accessible lavatory should extend a minimum of 17 inches from its back wall with an additional 29 inches of space “from the bottom of the apron to the finished floor.” Keep in mind that the maximum height of a lavatory should not exceed 34 inches, and if it is placed on a counter, there should be no more than two inches of space from the front edge.

Grab Bars
Another major component of creating a handicap accessible bathroom is the installation of grab bars. These are not intended to be used as towel racks, but rather, to aid those with limited mobility in getting on and off of the facilities. The diameter of a grab bar should measure between one and a quarter inches to one and a half inches, according to ADA guidelines. It should also be placed between 34 and 38 inches off the ground for maximum usability. The grab bar should also be rounded and have a large enough gap to be comfortably grabbed.

Ultimately, understanding these ADA bathroom requirements can help you transform your bathroom into one that is safe and easy to use for people of all ability levels. For more information about handicap bathroom requirements and wheelchair vehicle lifts, contact Access NSM.

lift sling for elderly

Answering Common Questions About Patient Lifts and Lift Slings

lift sling for elderly

When it comes to maintaining a safe home environment, an appropriate patient lift and sling application is an essential for your safe home environment. According to AARP and the National Conference of State Legislatures, 90% of people over the age of 65 want to live in their home as long as they can, and the perfect lift sling used along with the appropriate patient lift is one of the main components of maintaining a safe home environment during transfers throughout the home. If you’re considering investing in a patient lift for home use along with the perfect lift sling application, it’s important to know the facts. Here’s a quick FAQ about patient lifts for home use.

What are some uses for patient lifts?
Patient lifts are very versatile in their uses. They typically allow for patients to be transferred between many surfaces such as beds, wheelchairs, commodes, bath tubs or other places throughout the home. They use electric or hydraulic energy to safety lift patients with limited mobility or the ability to transfer on their own and relocate them while keeping them comfortable.

What are some types of patient lifts?
Patient lifts come in many different varieties and designs. Some are suspended from the ceiling with overhead tracks, some are mounted to the wall, and some simply rest on the floor. The two main categories of patient lifts are known as floor lifts and overhead lifts.

What are the main benefits of patient sling lifts?
A patient lift sling comes with significant benefits for both patients and caretakers. It enables heavier patients to be lifted and transferred without putting stress on the patient or caretaker. It also minimizes the number of caretakers needed to assist in a typical transfer. It greatly lowers the chance of orthopedic injury for both the patient and the caretaker(s). As you can see below, there are dozens of different types of lift sling applications that can be used to lift a person depending on the individual needs, so it is extremely important to work with a company and your healthcare professional that understands your goals. Feel free to view the video by Prism Medical (an AccessNSM supplier) to see an overview of lift sling technology.

Scroll Sling Images>>>

 


Are there any risks associated with the use of patient lifts?
As with most devices designed to improve mobility, improper use can result in injury. Always consult the owner’s manual and/or any documentation that comes with your patient lift as well as lift sling, and if you have questions or concerns, consult your doctor or caregiver or supplier of the lift.

What are some other types of equipment designed to improve mobility?
There are plenty of devices with variables uses designed to make someone more independent in the home. Patients who use a wheelchair for mobility can utilize various accessibility products such as wheelchair platform lifts, ramps and stair lifts for home use. Similarly, a automatic door opener can increase access and allow the wheelchair user to remain independent by eliminating the need to turn and pull a doorknob.

Ultimately, knowing the answers to these common questions about patient lifts and sling application can help you make the right decision regarding your home environment. For more information about how to improve access throughout your home, contact AccessNSM.

handicap accessible bathroom

3 Handicap Accessible Bathroom Products That Enhance Safety And Mobility

handicap accessible bathroom

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disabilities are all related to limited mobility. For those with mobility issues, simply completing everyday errands like going to the grocery store or taking the bus to work can be a logistical nightmare. At the same time, they may also have trouble doing important tasks around their home.

Recently, Home Advisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report found that 48% of homeowners over age 55 say that the bathroom is the top area in the home that they have considered modifying for aging in place. Fortunately, there are many simple steps that can help make your bathroom safer and more accessible than ever before.

Here are just a few suggestions for transforming your bathroom into a room that anyone can feel safe and comfortable using.

Step In Showers

Step-In Shower
Bathing and showering can be difficult for many people with mobility issues, especially if they require a wheelchair. While typical showers have an edge to keep water off the floor, installing a handicap accessible bathroom shower without an edge makes it possible to simply ride a wheelchair into the shower and back out again without little to no difficulty whatsoever. Of course, this does require the user to have a shower chair intended for submergence in water or a bench that one could transfer onto.

Shower and Tub Grab Bars

Shower Grab Bar
Another aspect of bathroom accessibility standards is minimizing the risk of slips and falls while in the bathroom. Installing a shower grab bar is one of the best ways to stay safe while bathing. In fact, Home Advisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report also found that 71% of home service professionals say the top aging-in-place projects they’ve been hired to do included installing bathroom grab bars. These bathroom accessibility products are minimally invasive, easy to use, and drastically help to reduce the risk of slipping or falling while bathing.

Sinks for wheelchair users

Wheelchair Accessible Sink
When considering handicap bathroom requirements, many people neglect to realize that the sink could pose accessibility issues as well. How high should bathroom sinks be for wheelchair users?

Here’s what the Spinal Cord Injury Zone recommends:

A bathroom vanity with space under it for a wheelchair can make it extremely easy for a handicapped person to wash their hands and brush their teeth. An ideal sink height for a wheelchair bound person is 30″, and a 34″ height should not be exceeded. For a very tall person who is not wheelchair bound but has trouble bending, a 40″ sink height is recommended.

Ultimately, taking these handicap accessible bathroom products and installation services into consideration can help you or someone you love stay as safe and independent as possible. Contrary to popular belief, there are relatively simple and cost-friendly ways to make the bathroom both safe and accessible.

For more information about bathroom accessibility products or complying with handicap accessible laws in your area, contact AccessNSM.