Video Q & A:

Daily Life and RA


Which gadgets can help me do things around the house?

Expert:   Kenya Beard , ACNP-BC, Hunter College »

Many assistive devices exist for people dealing with rhematoid arthritis. Check out this video to find out what you should purchase from a medical supply store.

Transcript: Getting dressed, dashing to the store, cooking dinner – these are everyday tasks that get COMPLICATED when you have rheumatoid arthritis. Joint pain, nodules or severe swelling ALL limit mobility—but there ARE novel inventions that can help. With all those zippers and buttons, getting dressed in the morning can get FRUSTRATING. So one of the first gadgets you should get is a zipper and button puller. When you can’t MANIPULATE your fingers enough to secure the button or zipper, this will do the trick! There’s also something called a DRESSING STICK that comes with all sorts of hooks that help you push and pull drawers, pick clothing up off the floor, and even shrug on sweaters. A SOCK puller and a LONG handled SHOE horn can help you with socks and sneakers, and Velcro or elastic closures on shoes can help you avoid fiddling with laces. Now that you’re dressed…You probably have a lot to get done around town! But since driving a car may pose some difficulties, get your hands on assistive devices. First, add a WIDE key turner to your small keys—it’ll make it easier to turn the ignition. Some key turners have handles. Add a running board to the side of your car so your step inside is smaller and manageable, when you’re getting into the car. There’s also a swivel seat that helps you slide into the car with ease. Some even come with handles. A beaded seat cover helps if you just need a “rolling” motion to get in and out. When you’re back home…It’s time to cook a meal. Many standard kitchen tools are available with THICK, padded handles, making it easier to slice steak, grip mugs and peel vegetables. Super-easy bottle AND jar openers can help you avoid the struggle to open tricky containers. Next, browse for plates or cutting boards with lips – they’re easier to GRIP. Finally, gripping tools with handles let you pick up plates WITHOUT having to pinch your fingers. Even though rheumatoid arthritis can make your daily tasks more challenging, these tools WILL help lighten your frustrations. More »

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