Modify Your Home to Help Manage Arthritis Iqaluit NU
Glace Bay, NS
St Andrews West, ON
St Stephen, NB
Modify Your Home to Help Manage Arthritis
(NC)-If you have arthritis, slight modifications to your home can help you manage daily activities. The Arthritis Society has put together a list of improvements you can make to different rooms to accommodate your needs.
In the Bathroom
• A raised toilet seat can make it easier to sit down and stand up.
• A grab bar and non-skid bath mat in your shower or bathtub provide support while standing.
• Changing the faucets on your sink, shower and bathtub to a lever design allows you to turn water on and off, and adjust temperature easily.
• An adjustable hand-held shower head provides the option of showering in a standing or sitting position, whichever is more comfortable for you.
• A slide bench or shower chair can be used to sit while in the shower.
• An occupational therapist can explain the benefits of a walk in shower or a cut-away tub.
In the Kitchen
• Items should be stored no higher than the shoulders and no lower than the waist for an easy and more comfortable reach.
• An adjustable perching stool with a back and arms allows you to sit while working at the kitchen counter.
• A trolley helps you transport meals and dishes between your kitchen and dining area to minimize trips and heavy lifting.
• Changing your kitchen faucet to a lever makes turning water on and off, and changing temperature easier.
• Electronic appliances and kitchen supplies with bigger grips can help you complete tasks with greater ease.
In your Living Room
• Couch and chair cushions with firm foam, or furniture elevated at the base help when standing up and sitting down.
• A chair that is firm, comfortable and the right height for you enables you to get in and out easily.
• Scatter rugs are a tripping hazard, so should be secured or removed.
• Hand railings installed on both sides of every staircase make for an easy grasp when going up and down.
• Night lights in poorly lit or dark areas allow you to watch your step as you move around your home.
• Remote controls and telephones with big buttons reduce stress on small finger joints.
Outside of your Home
• Sensor lights are useful so that you can see where you are going and avoid hazards if you are coming and going when it's dark.
• Railings on both sides of your entrance steps provide support when climbing or descending stairs.
• If the entrance steps are too far apart in height, half-steps can be put in place using concrete blocks to make the steps closer for an easier climb.
• Some people with arthritis benefit from the installation of a ramp. An occupational therapist and an experienced contractor should be consulted.
The Arthritis Society's website at www.arthritis.ca offers additional advice on home improvements, which can minimize the effects of arthritis on your daily living.