Common symptoms of Parkinson's disease, such as stiffness, slowness of movement, shaking and loss of muscle control, can impede a sufferer's ability to retain their independence. Everyday tasks, such as shopping and showering, can be a struggle and this can impact on your physical and emotional well-being. Mobility aids can help you retain your independence for longer, and your Parkinson's nurse can help you determine the types of aids that would be most beneficial to you. Here's an overview of three mobility aids that Parkinson's patients may find useful:
A bath board is a simple, cost-effective way to enable you to wash more comfortably and safely. The plastic board is positioned across the bath, creating a secure seat for you when showering. It can also be useful if you struggle to lift your legs over the side of the bath. Simply sit on the bath board and swing your legs over the bath rather than trying to lift them.
Folding Seat Walking Stick
Fatigue, dizziness and shaking can make you wary of leaving the house on your own and even impact your confidence when moving around indoors. A folding seat walking stick gives you the same support offered by a traditional walking stick with the added benefit of being able to sit down at any time regardless of where you are. The seat and two extra legs are attached to the side of the walking stick and open out to form a three-legged stool.
Tremors and muscle weakness can make using cutlery a challenge. If Parkinson's causes you to spill food when trying to eat with cutlery you may feel embarrassed and avoid social events that involve food, but weighted cutlery could solve this problem. The added weight causes the muscles in your hands to engage more, which improves control. If weighted cutlery helps, why not take your own set when dining out? There are a number of styles available, and some sets look no different to the cutlery found in most homes and restaurants.
These are just a few examples of mobility aids you may find useful. Other examples include battery operated jar openers, recliner chairs, scooters and grip cups. Your Parkinson's nurse or physiotherapist (like those at GMS Rehabilitation) will have a range of aids you can try out and, if required, will show you how to use them. So, if there's anything you're struggling with, don't keep it to yourself.