LIVING WITH ARTHRITIS
Westmoreland County Area Agency on Aging Information Line: When you have arthritis, it’s the little things-buttoning a blouse, opening a jar, gripping a pen-that can keep you from doing the things you want or need to do. There are devices on the market that provide the assistance you need.
In the Kitchen• Opening containers can be a real challenge. For cans with ring-tops, there is a tool to use with cans of tuna fish, soda or cat food. A number of companies make jar openers that are useful for tightening as well as opening jars.• Slice and dice without a knife. There are many food choppers available that will chop food with the push of button.
In the Bedroom• There is a tool available that can help you button – or unbutton – shirts and blouses. Another product, an extra-long shoehorn, is excellent for people who have trouble bending over.
• If you have shoulder pain, there is an extra long-reach brush and comb that make hair grooming possible without moving your shoulder or lifting your upper arm.In the Bathroom
• An electric toothbrush can make dental care much easier.• If you have difficulty getting up from the toilet, a raised seat may be for you. Look for models with armrests and a clamp-on locking mechanism for extra stability.
In the Garden• U-shaped gardener’s kneelers make it easier for you to get close to your flower or vegetable beds, while providing the support you need to get up safely. Turn them upside down and you have an instant garden bench.
• Radius pistol-grip garden tools lessen the strain on your wrist when weeding or planting. Below are some websites that may help you find supplies or devices to make life with arthritis a little easier.