|(ARA) Ahh ... home sweet home. There's nothing more comforting than recovering in your own home after a hospital stay. But your humble abode can pose its own set of problems even extending your recovery time if it's not properly prepared.|
Everyday household items from kitchen counter tops to oven doors can present new problems for people with limited mobility. Entering doorways and moving through narrow halls can prove to be difficult with a walker or wheelchair, and stairs can be tricky when relying on crutches for support and balance.
"And don't forget about bathrooms," Kevin Jones, senior brand/product manager for the Home Care by Moen line of bath safety items, said. "The slick surfaces and hard edges can make these small rooms the most dangerous spots in your house while recuperating."
The first few days of recovery are the most critical, and it is always recommended to have someone assist you. But if that's not an option, here are some helpful tips to make your return home as safe, enjoyable and hassle-free as possible.
Create a Comfort Zone
Prior to your hospital visit, set up a "comfort zone" on one floor of your home preferably near a bathroom with a temporary bed, and make sure a telephone is within reach. Other items including bottled water, snack foods, TV remote, movies, magazines, even your favorite pillow should be pre-stocked and nearby.
Enter and Exit with Ease
You're finally home and all you want to do is relax, but when you get to the stairs you realize they're much harder to handle than before. Since most houses require the use of stairs to enter and exit, it's important to ensure the handrails are secure and can withstand pressure. Designer Hand Grips are an easy and ideal addition to home danger zones. And, if necessary, consider purchasing a ramp to accommodate a wheelchair or walker. Ramps are available through medical supply stores, or you can do-it-yourself by purchasing lumber from a local home improvement center.
Corridors in the majority of newer homes are large enough to accommodate crutches, a walker or a wheelchair, but older homes may have narrow passageways and stairs. To move safely from one room to another, ensure that the space is clutter-free and remove all loose wires, carpets and rugs.
Make the Commode Accommodating
It's a fact of life the bathroom is the one room you can't avoid while on the road to recovery, and it has the potential to be the most dangerous. Many people find the toilet seat is too low to accommodate their limited mobility and puts unnecessary stress on the legs, knees and back. An elevated toilet seat increases comfort and safety levels.
Elevated toilet seats are now available that subtly complement the decor of any bathroom, and lock securely on toilet rims. Or if the bath is just too far for you to reach, Home Care also offers a new Premium Bedside Commode for added safety and comfort right next to the bed.
Showering always seems to make you feel better but getting in and out of the tub or shower can be quite a dilemma. Try using a transfer bench that provides comfort and stability, like Home Care by Moen's new Premium Transfer Bench. This high-quality transfer bench offers an ergonomically designed back and spacious seat with a curved end for optimal support and comfort. Plus, it comes equipped with a basket organizer and handheld shower holder to keep necessary items conveniently close.
In addition, consider purchasing a handheld showerhead to more easily control the water flow. Home Care by Moen's Premium Pause Control Handheld Shower offers safe, easy and luxurious showering options for bathers, whether seated or standing, featuring three unique spray settings, and a pause setting, to create your own unique shower experience. It also features an ergonomic handle with safety strap and extra long hose for easy handling. You'll be feeling clean and refreshed in no time all while remaining safe.
Hungry? Before you venture into the kitchen, make sure it is safe for your limited mobility. If standing at counter tops for lengthy periods is difficult, consider purchasing a portable/rolling kitchen table that will allow you to sit while preparing food. Or a stool will allow you to sit at the counter. Keep areas surrounding counter tops well lit and uncluttered.
Those hard-to-reach items in your overhead cabinets may prove to be more of a challenge than before. Move frequently used items to counter tops or drawers below your cabinets.
For more information on bath safety products, visit homecare.moen.com.
Courtesy of ARAcontent