The 5 Best Occupational Therapy Tools for Seniors

It can be heartbreaking to watch your loved one struggle to perform activities that were once simple. Buttoning a shirt takes careful coordination. Putting on socks is a massive challenge.

But occupational therapy can make a big difference and dramatically improve how well your loved one functions.

At Bladen East, we offer extensive rehabilitation programs for your loved one, including occupational therapy.

Want to know more about occupational therapy? We’ll explain this discipline and let you know about the 5 best occupational therapy tools for seniors.

The 5 Best Occupational Therapy Tools for Seniors

Occupational therapy can be useful after a stroke, hip replacement, fall or injury. Occupational therapy is a type of rehabilitation that concentrates on helping your loved one be able to perform the tasks of living. This means helping them learn to eat again, get dressed, brush their teeth and use the bathroom.

Occupational therapists accomplish this by using assistive devices. These are occupational therapy tools for seniors that make these daily tasks easier.

Let’s examine some of these tools and how our caring, compassionate staff may use them during one of our occupational therapy sessions.

1. Button Hooks

This device is incredibly simple, yet it makes a huge difference. By using a wire loop at the end of a non-slip handle, your loved one can place the wire through the buttonhole, grab the button, and pull it back through.

This is not only a useful device for those who have been injured. It’s also perfect for those who have arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome.

2. Grabber

This device has a handle that controls a “gripper” that can be used to pick up objects from the floor, get hard-to-reach-objects and more. It also keeps them from bending over in a manner that could cause a fall or additional injury.

The grabber can also be used for pulling up socks and for assistance putting on pants.

These are easy to find and should be a part of your loved one’s selection of occupational therapy tools for seniors.

3.  Sock Assistive Device

We take for granted that we can easily lean down and put on a pair of socks…that is, until we see our loved one having difficulty with this simple task.

This device has a chute connected to two ropes. All your loved one has to do is position their foot within the chute and use the ropes to pull the sock upwards. (Don’t worry, your occupational therapist at Bladen East will be more than happy to show your loved one how.)

4. Grab Bars

When your loved one is discharged home after rehabilitation, grab bars are a must. Be sure they are installed in areas such as the bathroom, showers, stairways (if there are no handrails) and other areas of your house. Not sure where you need them? Just ask your occupational therapist, who will be happy to help.

5.  Assistive Utensils

Your loved one may be frustrated because it’s more difficult for them to use forks and spoons in order to eat. But there’s no need for frustration: a simple assistive device is the answer you need.

It can be difficult to hold smaller items such as silverware. Simple adaptive devices can make this so much easier on your loved one. Typically, these come with a loop for them to wrap around their hand, or they have a larger, no-slip handle.

What Are the Benefits of Occupational Therapy for the Elderly?

There are several benefits of occupational therapy for the elderly. They include:

Improved Fine Motor Skills

Those who have experienced occupational therapy find it easier to use their hands to move objects and use them. This means it will be easier for them to eat and perform activities of daily living.

The Ability to Dress Themselves

Many of the assisted devices we listed above are vital for helping your loved one regain a portion of their independence. This not only lessens their dependence on you but enables you to move out of your role as caregiver and back into your role as son, daughter or spouse.

Improved Quality of Life

If there’s one thing you should take away from this article, it’s that occupational therapy dramatically improves the quality of life for you and your loved one. It helps your loved one return to the activities they used to do. It enables them to have a stronger sense of independence.

It helps you because you can rest easy knowing that your loved one can take care of their basic everyday tasks. This means you no longer have to help them get dressed or eat. It’s a relief that you no longer have to shoulder those exhausting tasks.

Bladen East Has Everything Your Loved One Needs for a Full Recovery

We know you’ve been through a lot. You’ve worried about your parent or spouse and are concerned about what is in their best interest. You know they need more care than you can give, but you still want them to remain at home.

We want your loved one to return home as soon as safely possible. We realize how important it is to be in their own environment.

That’s why our occupational therapists use a wide variety of techniques and tools to be sure your loved one gets the time and attention they deserve. With outpatient programs, your loved one may only get a few hours of therapy a week. At Bladen East, we offer more frequent sessions by certified occupational therapists in Elizabethtown, NC.

Are you ready to take the next step? See why so many of our residents love Bladen East. Contact us to get started.