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Clipping your toenails, washing your hair, going to the toilet, bathing, are all tasks that we perform on a regular basis without even giving it a second thought. When you suffer with limited mobility however, these daily tasks can often prove problematic and it can impact on your personal hygiene regime.
Maintaining a good hygiene routine is vital. It can help to promote good health, and it can reduce the risk of illnesses and infections. Living with a debilitating condition that affects your mobility should not mean that you need to forgo your independence or dignity in regards to your grooming habits.
In this article we will cover some of the best personal hygiene aids that are currently on the market. They can assist users with common grooming activities and allow them to remain clean and healthy and live with dignity.
Inflatable Shampoo Basin
For users who are bedridden, a portable inflatable shampoo basin is a useful aid that allows for assisted hair washing while the user remains lying down in bed.
The shampoo basin is usually constructed from heavy-duty vinyl and contains a recess where the user can rest their neck against the basin while their hair is being washed.
In order to wash the user’s hair, water can be poured from a jug. After use, the waste water can be drained by removing the stopper from the attached hose and it can be deflated for compact storage.
An alternative to an inflatable shampoo basin is a no-rinse shampoo cap. A shampoo cap can be used to wash someone’s hair without the need of any water or rinsing and it therefore avoids any mess. The user’s hair can be washed while they’re seated or in bed.
The disposable shampoo cap already has the shampoo ingredients applied to it, so you simply need to apply the cap, massage the hair through the cap for 15-20 seconds and finally towel dry the hair.
Long-handled Hair Brush
For arthritis sufferers, extending ones arm and twisting their shoulder in order to comb their hair can often prove painful.
The use of a long-handled comb or brush can provide the user with extra reach and it can help to reduce the amount of straining and alleviate the pressure on their painful joints.
The following long handled comb and hair brush set has ergonomically-designed handles with a non-slip rubber grip which is perfect for users with limited hand dexterity. The comb and brush is shaped to follow the curve of head which allows for easy hair styling and requires minimal upper arm and shoulder movement.
Bending to wipe after going to the toilet can be a challenge for anyone that may be suffering from limited mobility.
An aid such as the one manufactured from Fanwer can making wiping less of an effort. It can help to extend the user’s reach and it also promotes personal hygiene and most importantly independence and dignity.
In order to use the discreet wiping aid from Fanwer, place some toilet tissue into the flexible head. The mechanism will hold the toilet tissue in place. After use, the tissue paper can be released by simply pressing on the button located on the top of the wiping aid.
Whether you’re applying creams, oils, gels or lotions, a handheld lotion applicator can assist with applying them to hard-to-reach areas such as the back, shoulders or legs without having to twist or turn.
The lotion applicator from Vive has a textured surface which means creams and lotions will keep on the pad. It also has an anti-bacterial finish which will prevent mold and mildew from developing and it has a comfortable non-slip handle to ensure you can grip it even with wet hands.
Long-Handled Hair Washer
A long-handled hair washer can make it easier for users to wash their hair without having to apply shampoo/conditioner or massage their scalp with their fingers. It is a handy aid for anyone that has limited arm reach or hand dexterity and is therefore struggling to properly wash their hair.
The ergonomically shaped non-slip long handle allows for easy access to all areas of the scalp without having to twist or put undue strain on the limbs. The washing nodules on the brush’s head ensures that you’re able to keep your hair squeaky clean and your scalp free of dead skin cells.
Cleaning your feet while in the shower can be a real struggle if you unable to bend down or you’re unsteady on your feet. To make things safer, a foot cleaner can be used which removes the need of having to stretch and stain in order to clean your feet, and it can avoid the risk of falls.
In order to use a foot cleaner, simply place it to the floor of the shower or bathtub and the suction cups will keep it securely in place. Next, apply some liquid soap and rub your foot over the bristles in order to clean between your toes and feet.
The bristles are great at softening and removing dry and dead skin and it can also help to improve blood circulation.
For individuals with limited flexibility or reach, a flannel strap is a handy aid that allows users to wash their backs and other difficult to reach areas more easily.
The flannel strap from HomeCraft is double-sided. On one side it has a terry surface which can be used for washing, while on the reverse side, the coarser foam can be used for scouring and toning skin.
It includes as well a matching hand mitt which can be used to wash other parts of the body.
The flannel strap is fitted with d-ring handles which makes it easy to grip even with arthritic hands.
Long-Handled Bath Sponge
An alternative to a flannel strap is a long-handled bath sponge. Just like a flannel strap it can be used to wash hard to reach areas.
The bath sponge from EasyComforts has a 19″ long folding handle and it comes with 4 interchangeable heads including a sponge, pumice, loofah and a lotion applicator so it makes it a perfect all-in-one device for your washing needs.
Wet Wash Glove
For bedridden users who are unable to shower or bathe, a wet wash glove can be a great alternative to remain clean and odour free.
The single-use ultra-soft wash glove is pre-moistened on both sides and it allows a user or caregiver to assist in washing without the need for any soap, water, rinsing or drying. It is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin and it is alcohol and paraben free.
Table-Top Nail Clippers
Operating traditional fingernail clippers for arthritis or Parkinson sufferers can be a real struggle. Holding the clippers steady when you suffer with hand tremors or operating them with painful hand joints can often prove a real ordeal.
Table-top nail clippers have been designed to assist users with limited hand dexterity. Unlike traditional clippers, they are mounted on a base with non-slip feet that provides extra stability. They can be used on a table-top or other type of flat surface. They have a larger lever that requires less force to operate making it more comfortable and easier to cut fingernails with.
Long-Handled Toenail Scissors
When you suffer with reduced mobility reaching down to trim your toenails can be a problem. If you also suffer with arthritic hands this makes it all the more complicated when trying to operate regular toe nail scissors or clippers that require greater force and grip to operate.
The use of long-handled toe nail scissors can help to increase your reach so you don’t need to stain your back or legs while trimming your toenails. They also have an angled cutting head which allows for easier operation especially for users that may suffer from claw or hammer toes.
Many long-handled toenail scissors come with ergonomically loop-shaped handles that are easier to operate with inflamed or painful hands.
Hands-Free Hairdryer Stand
If you suffer with arthritic hands or you have a weak grip, you will know that having to hold a heavy hair dryer for a prolonged period of time can be a painful experience.
An aid which enables you to dry your hair without having to hold a dryer is a hands free hairdryer stand.
The following hairdryer stand from Luckln is height adjustable and has a 360 degrees rotating neck which allows you to adjust it to suit your particular needs. It can be placed on a countertop or floor and it can hold most standard blow dryers.
Foam Tubing Padding Grips
Padding grips can assist users with weaker grips to better hold common everyday objects such as toothbrushes, shavers, hair-brushes etc.
The multi-purpose high-density foam hand-grips come in a range of diameter sizes to fit all types of objects from thick objects such as a brush or shaver to thinner items such as a pen.
In order to use the grip, cut the tubbing with some scissors to the required length and finally insert the object handle into the slot of the grip.