October 21, 2016 | 8:00 am | By Pants Up Easy
One of the main jobs of an occupational therapist is to help injured or disabled patients learn how to complete activities of daily living. For example, a person with a recent spinal cord injury may have to use a wheelchair in order to get around. Activities of daily living such as getting dressed, cooking, and bathing are all going to have to be done differently than they were before the injury. There are several healthcare products that occupational therapists can incorporate into therapy that will help their patients adapt to their new way of life.
There are several healthcare products that occupational therapists can use to help assist their patients in the restroom. A shower chair is a product that patients with limited mobility will need to learn to use. In occupational therapy patients can learn how to transfer out of their wheelchair onto the shower chair and vice versa. This is an important skill to learn because patients will use the shower chair multiple times per week.
Toileting is another activity that can be difficult for patients with a spinal cord injury or other mobility issues. There are several healthcare products that can make toileting easier for these patients such as a grab bar and a raised toilet seat. Many of these patients also have difficulty pulling their pants back up after using the restroom. There is a product called Pants Up Easy that can help with this issue in the restroom. Pants Up Easy allows patient’s hands to remain free while they lift themselves up. This design makes it possible for patients to safely and independently pull up their own pants. These are all great products to introduce to patients in therapy so they will know what options they have for their own homes.
Another daily task that patients are going to have to relearn is getting dressed. For example, a paraplegic will likely need to use some type adaptive dressing equipment in order to put on pants, socks, and shoes. There is a free standing version of Pants Up Easy that can be used to help with the process of getting dressed each day. Other types of helpful products include the long handle shoe horn, leg lifter strap, and a shoe remover. All of these require a little practice and occupational therapy is a great place for patients to get familiar with how to use these products.
Transfer boards can greatly increase independence for people with spinal cord injuries. They can allow many patients to do tasks such as bathe, use the restroom, and get into a car independently. It is important that patients learn the proper techniques for using transfer boards in order to prevent falls and injury. Occupational therapists can use transfer boards with their patients as an integral part of the therapeutic process. The list of healthcare products available to occupational therapist goes on and on. The most important thing to consider when choosing a product is how it will help patients in the long run. Patients need to be exposed to tools that they can get for their own home and use to live a more independent life.