Dressing and undressing is something we all take for granted, but for the elderly or disabled population, it can be a challenging, time-consuming, and degrading routine that must be done every day. In addition, conditions such as dementia, arthritis, or Parkinson’s make the seemingly simple task of dressing oneself quite complicated. Luckily it doesn’t have to remain so; there are some fantastic pieces of equipment available today that can significantly assist those that require assistance to dress and undress.
Whether it’s a struggle reaching down to put those cozy socks on or whether it’s those finicky small buttons that are causing a problem, don’t fret. There is a useful dressing aid for all situations; keep reading below to find one that best suits your needs.
Our Best Picks
With so many dressing aids out there, it can get confusing which one does what. We understand this frustration, so we have taken the time to compile a list of our best dressing aids into simple-to-follow categories. You may follow along so that you can find the best dressing equipment you require in no time at all.
General Dressing Aids
There are some excellent all-around dressing aids that are fantastic to have at your disposal, no matter the restriction you face. They are as follows;
- A Dressing Stick
A dressing stick is one of the most common pieces of dressing aid equipment. It is a long stick with small useful metal hooks and loops on the end. Perfect for assisting with pesky shoelaces, zippers, pants, shirts, and socks. A must-have, in our opinion.
- A Grabber
Grabbers are another one of those dressing tools that we highly recommend everyone get a hold of (no pun intended!).
They are similar to a dressing stick; however, they consist of a claw on the end that is mechanically closed and opened with a lever on the handle. This means no more bending down or strains to pick up items that are uncomfortable to reach.
- Zipper Pull Tabs
Zipper pull tabs are often overlooked items that can present a large amount of difficulty in dressing for specific population cohorts. This is why they also go into our absolute must-have dressing aid box of tools. These oversized, thick textured zippers make it a cinch to grab hold of and use any zipper. If you are someone with arthritis or lacking dexterity in their hands, this item will be especially practical for you.
For Socks and Shoes
Working from the bottom of the body up, now let’s look at some aids that are more specifically designed for specific uses rather than just general all-around great items to assist in dressing.
- Compression Sock Aid
Compression socks are a fantastic item that many disabled or older people use to maintain good circulation and regulate body temperature. However, how tight and restrictive they are to get on is not so great about them. This is where a compression sock donner comes in.
Simply peeling a compression sock over the device and sliding your foot through makes the frustration of putting compression socks on a thing of the past.
- Normal Sock Aid
If you don’t require the larger piece of equipment for compression socks, you may instead pick up a simple sock tube aid that makes regular socks (that aren’t as tight) a breeze to apply.
- Shoe Horn
The classic shoehorn, which is usually a smooth-edged wooden dressing device, is excellent for placing stubborn shoes on your feet.
One of the more difficult items of clothing to put on is pants. Therefore, having a useful pant dressing aid is helpful in this circumstance, especially for those in wheelchairs.
Bras can be a difficult-to-reach item to unclasp or clasp, even for those with perfect dexterity, so it will come as no surprise that it presents a challenge to those with impairments. However, there are many bra dressing aid assistants out there that you can pick up to make this task quick and seamless.
- The Bra Angel
The “Bra Angel” holds one end of your bra at the front, allowing you to bring the other end around your body and fasten at the front with one hand. The Bra Angel was created by an occupational therapist to minimize the need to stretch, twist, or strain when putting on your bra. It’s perfect for people who have restricted mobility, dexterity, arthritis, or painful joint issues.
Tiny, delicate buttons can throw up a challenge when you wish to place an item of clothing on with them. If this sounds familiar, you should check out getting a button hook. A handy piece of equipment that allows a person of almost all abilities to thread buttons through the hole with ease.
- A buttonhook
A buttonhook is a tool used to facilitate the closing of buttoned shoes, gloves, or other clothing. It consists of a hook fixed to a handle; the hook is looped around buttons and pulled through the buttonhole.
Have we missed anything? Get in touch and let us know. We love staying up to date with all things that aid people.