Moving Towards Mobility: Independent Living in the Wake of Mobility Impairments

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Loss

of lower body function

Older adults often struggle with the toll aging takes on their bodies. As time passes, their muscles weaken, their bones lose density, and their joints break down, causing discomfort and pain as they perform daily tasks. Many older adults feel the impact of this most on their legs, hindering their ability to move around as they once did. While these barriers may prove troublesome to independent living, they can be overcome.

mobilty2

Freedom

of mobility

For many of us, mobility means freedom.  A loved one experiencing loss of mobility may feel angry, fearful, or even depressed by the physical limitations they are experiencing.  While you may not be able to take away their pain, you can help your loved ones better manage their discomfort and provide them with necessary relief so they can live happily and independently.

mobility3

Getting

out and about

Many older adults who experience mobility impairments may withdraw from friends and family to hide their pain. Keeping your loved one connected to their community is essential for their physical and emotional well-being.

  • When your loved one is walking around, make sure they have access to a cane or walker. Mobility aids will help keep them stable and reduce pressure on their legs and joints, allowing them to move more comfortably.
  • Check with local businesses to see if they have wheelchairs or electric carts available for people with mobility impairments. Utilize these resources if your loved one begins to feel tired or sore.
  • Invest in a pair of supportive footwear to help with balance and reduce pressure on various parts of your loved one’s legs.
mobility4

Health

AND HYGIENE

Losing leg function can hinder many parts of your loved one’s daily routine, including their health and hygiene habits. Work with your loved one to create a new method around their physical limitations that maximizes their comfort and independence.

  • Help your loved one create a daily workout routine that is fun, engaging, and comfortable. Many older adults benefit from water aerobics and yoga.
  • Make sure your loved one’s shower is accessible to them. Some older adults may need a transfer bench to safely enter their bath, while others may benefit from a shower chair or walk-in tub. Talk with your loved one about their needs and make adjustments accordingly.
  • Consider investing in dressing aids that will preserve your loved one’s dignity while maximizing their independence.
 
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DIY

HOME MODIFICATIONS

Help your loved one feel comfortable in their own home by taking the time to make necessary modifications to their environment.

  • Install guide rails throughout your loved one’s home to provide them with an extra layer of stability and support.
  • Widen door frames where necessary to accommodate your loved one’s assistive devices.
  • If your loved one’s home has stairs, install a chair lift to grant them easy access to this area. If this isn’t feasible, consider moving all principal rooms/items from this area to an accessible location.
  • Invest in sturdy furniture that can withstand your loved one leaning on it for support. Make sure tall pieces of furniture are anchored to the wall. For smaller pieces like nightstands, consider investing in some non-skid pads to keep them in place.
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PRIORITIES:

MENTAL HEALTH AND MOBILITY

Mobility impairments can take a significant toll on your loved one’s mental health. 

  • Make sure your loved one has activities they enjoy that don’t require much (or any) movement to complete. On days where walking is too painful or stressful, these activities can provide your loved one with stimulation and a feeling of accomplishment.
  • Schedule time to connect with your loved one in their home and assist with any physically challenging tasks.
  • Get your loved one connected to older adult support groups or other peer programs to talk about their needs and concerns with people who understand.

More Recommended Products for Patients with Mobility Loss

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reading is everything

unique Mobility Needs

Loss of leg function can cause substantial life changes for many older adults and their caregivers. At Beverly’s Daughter, our team is waiting to help you and your loved one transition smoothly into this new era of your lives. Contact your loved one’s primary care physician today for a list of adaptive equipment and send it to our staff for a list of personalized recommendations tailored to your loved one’s individual needs – all within 48 hours.

Loved Ones WITH limited Mobility CAN REMAIN INDEPENDENT

Mobility loss can be a challenge, but we offer many products and solutions to assist you and your parent to keep them safe so they can maintain their independence at home as long as possible. 

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