Lighter for arthritic hands

(MORE: How to Ease Arthritis — and Stay Active)
Meal Prep and Eating

  • Open It: Even if you don’t have arthritis, getting into boxes and blister packages these days requires the help of Houdini. This tool has steel blade snippers and a retractable razor.
  • Fiskars Soft Touch Scissors: If you have weak hands, scissoring can be painful. These spring back automatically so you don’t have to open them.
  • Zim Jar Opener: Opens up everything from a toothpaste tube to five-gallon jar lids.

Dressing and Grooming

  • Good Grip Button Hook: The large, rubberized handle makes buttoning clothes easier.
  • Elastic Shoelaces: If tying laces is complicated, these are stretchy enough so that once they are tied, you can take your shoes on or off without untying.
  • Denco Nail Clippers: Comfortable, soft-grip handles and a leverage-enhanced design let you clip with less squeezing. Plus, no twisting or folding required.

Driving

  • Easy-to-Reach Seat Belt Handle: A long, flexible plastic loop enables you to grab your seatbelt without twisting or reaching. Glows in the dark.
  • HandyBar: A small, hinged handle you slip into the car door frame that provides support for getting in and out of the car.
  • Swivel Car Seat: A slim seat pad that turns 360 degrees so you can get in and out of the car without straining.
  • Gas Cap Turning Aid: A simple handle that gives you leverage for opening and closing your gas cap, making for easier fill-ups.

Resting and Relaxation

  • Bookmate: A vinyl holder that keeps hardcover and paperback books open and flat.
  • Tek-Pal TV Remote: Comes with big, easy to find and push buttons.
  • Cervical Support Cloud Pillow: A specially shaped pillow (with memory foam layer) that properly supports neck vertebrae, relieving upper body muscle strain and tension.

Moss also answered important questions on how to buy and use arthritis tools:
Which tools are right for me?
“At first, you have to go by instinct to see what looks useful for your particular issue, and then go by trial and error. You can also consult your physician, rheumatology nurse or occupational or physical therapist.
“One caution: Don’t get a mobility device like a motorized scooter without a recommendation from a medical professional. This is one case where use it or lose it might apply. Using a scooter full-time rather than walking eliminates the opportunity to get physical activity, and movement is key to retaining joint function and reducing pain.
(MORE: 7 Low-Tech Gadgets You Really Need)
“Also, don’t overlook items that may not be manufactured for arthritis patients per se, but just make sense ergonomically. You can find good computer keyboards, wrist rests, supportive chairs, copyholders to keep your neck straight at most office supply stores.”
Should I get training on the equipment?
“There are certain tools for which you will need training by a professional. There are right ways and wrong ways to use products that are safety oriented, like a bath lift or cane. Do you grab with one arm or two, which leg do you lift, when do you turn around? An occupational or physical therapist will come out to the home and evaluate in certain situations.”
How can I tell if a product is manufactured well? Is there a rating attached?
“The Arthritis Foundation has a program called Ease of Use (EOU), in which products are tested by Georgia Tech and then a panel of arthritis patients. If you go to the site, you can see which passed or look for the Ease-of-Use Commendation logo on the product packaging.”
Get out your inner McGyver!
“There are good products out there, but don’t forget there are clever things you can do yourself to make or adapt equipment. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. For example, if you have something that’s become too small to grip, wrap tape or foam around it to make the grip larger for your fingers. There are a lot more examples here.”

By Beth Levine

Contents

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Hand Helper, Grip Tools, Arthritis Assistive Devices, Kitchen Aids

What are Hand Helpers?

Hand helpers, also called arthritis assistive devices, make daily tasks easier on the joints. They keep joints in the best position for providing leverage when needed, for functioning, and to extend range of motion. Range of motion is important to maintain in the affected joints as well as keeping the strength of the muscles in the surrounding area. This muscular strength supports the joint to minimize stiffness and pain during movement. Hand helper devices can provide support with getting dressed, opening jars, reaching for items, shopping, and assisting in the kitchen, the bathroom, and the car.

How do Hand Helpers Work?

Hand helper devices can take care of an individual in many ways. In the bedroom, they can help when getting dressed, such as zipper pulls and buttoning aids. A button hook has a loop at one end for fastening small buttons on sweaters and blouses, and a hook at the other end to open and close zippers. A long-handled shoe horn makes putting on shoes easier when bending is hard to do. It also has a small notch on the end to assist in removing socks. An easy pull hairbrush has Velcro straps to brush the hair for those with minimal hand function.

In the kitchen, a reacher can be operated to retrieve items which are kept on high cupboard shelves or to pick up items from the floor. This is basically a long stick with a gripper or suction cup on one end to extend the reach 2 to 3 feet. A pan holder keeps a pan in place in order for the individual to stir the contents with one hand. A fixed jar opener can open or close screw-type, vacuum, pry-up, or crown top lids. Suction bottle brushes have a suction base for the sink to keep its brushes in place while washing bottles and glasses. A rocking T knife applies pressure directly above the food being cut so less strength and dexterity is needed to use it. It can also be applied with one hand. A bowl holder benefits those who have function in only one hand. Its frame holds a bowl while mixing and then can be tipped to pour the contents into a serving container. To enjoy an apple without having to pare it by hand, an apple peeler, corer, and slicer has a clamp down base to keep it fixed to a counter top or table top.

In the bathroom, a body care hair washer has a long, curved handle attached to a scrub brush to allow easy bathing and shampooing for those with limited range of motion. It gently scrubs with a nylon mesh which covers closed cell foam. A hands-free dryer stand holds a dryer steady for one-handed drying and styling, or both hands can be free to manipulate styling instruments.

Whether it is spending time in the driver’s seat or getting in and out of a car, automotive assistive devices can improve the experience. To make it easier to open doors and turn on the ignition, a wide key holder is a good helper. Beaded seat covers are available to make it simpler to get in and out of the seat as well as make the ride more comfortable. If suffering with a stiff neck, a panoramic or wide-angled rear view mirror aids in widening the view. A seatbelt extender attaches to the seatbelt to make it easier to pull, grasp, and buckle.

When shopping, reachers enable an individual to retrieve items from high shelves at the store. Motorized shopping carts allow sitting while shopping to ease the pain on the joints. Shopping bags with handles are better on the hands and wrists, and can be slid over the forearms to free the hands. To lighten the load on the elbows and shoulders, cross the arms and hold the bags close to the body.

Rehabmart is pleased to carry a wide assortment of innovative hand helper tools from top quality vendors, which include Sammons Preston, Maddak, Drive Medical, Carex, Posey, MaxiAids, North Coast, Hearmore, and Stander Inc.

Mike Price, OT
Rehabmart Co-Founder & CTO

lb

Quality Aids for Arthritis – Holiday Season Sale!

Arthritis is a disease of the joints. It is a common disease that can affect people of all age groups. More often it is seen in women than men. Arthritis is characterized by swelling, stiffness, pain and reduced range of motion in joints. These symptoms are not permanent. They come and go and can range from mild to severe. People who are older are more prone to this disease. Arthritis may worsen over time causing difficulty in carrying out routine functions like climbing stairs or walking.

What are Common Types of Arthritis?

There are many different types of arthritis, some of the major ones are explained below:

Osteoarthritis

It is the most common type of arthritis that causes the protective cartilage of joint to break down hampering the movement of the affected joint. This condition may cause bones to rub against each other directly causing chronic pain. Pain may also be due to the wearing out of other joint parts like the bone, synovium and ligaments. Pain intensity varies from person to person and the amount of damage caused.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Is an autoimmune disease in which the joints and other organs are attacked by the immune system itself. Normally the immune system works to protect the body from outside entities like bacteria and viruses but in case of autoimmune disorders like RA it becomes over active and starts attacking the healthy tissue. The main damage is caused to the synovium (lining of the joints). Persistent inflammation may cause the synovium to break down over time causing permanent damage.

Psoriatic Arthritis

In psoriatic arthritis, immune system of the body attacks it, resulting in pain and inflammation. It causes arthritis by affecting the joints, enthesitis by affecting the connective tissue, and psoriasis by affecting the skin.

Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a central pain syndrome, wherein the pain signals are processed differently by brain and spinal cord. Touch or movements that are not painful to others might be a source of pain for you and movements which are painful for others might hurt you even more. It causes widespread pain, sleep problems, fatigue, and concentration issues.

Treatment for Arthritis

Arthritis can be treated using three major ways:

  • Medications – There are a number of different medication available depending on the type of arthritis affecting the individual. These medications mostly help in reducing pain & inflammation and enhancing the strength of the joints.
  • Therapy – Therapy is one of the most commonly used treatments to treat as well as rehabilitate the symptoms of arthritis. There are a number of therapies such as hot and cold therapy, compression therapy, exercise therapy, electrotherapy, etc.
  • Surgery – Surgery is the last resort when none of the other treatment options are useful and the condition has worsened. One should always consider non-invasive treatment options at first, and if you opt for a surgical treatment option then consult your doctor before taking any step.

Rehabilitation of Arthritis

In some cases arthritis can causes permanent changes in the joints of a person which can be seen in an X-ray test. Arthritis may also affect other organs in the body like the heart, eyes, lungs or kidneys. Arthritis cannot be cured but it can be controlled. Measures can be taken to preserve bone and joint function and mobility by providing rehabilitation and comfort to the condition.

  • Weight Management – Excess weight can add stress on the joints, and thus cause pain and discomfort the joint affected by arthritis. Maintaining a healthy weight is essential for overall bone health which also helps in reducing the discomfort of arthritis.
  • Hot and Cold Therapy – Hot and cold therapy is helpful in reducing inflammation. It reaches deep down into the muscles and also enhances blood circulation. A healthy circulation of blood reduces inflammation and allows for a greater alleviation of pain. Arthritis products like Thermophore Classic Moist Heat Pack can be used to ease out pain and improve circulation.
  • Orthopedic Splints – Splints are designed to immobilize joints and prevent any injuries due to sudden contact or injuries. They prevent degeneration of joints and also prevent injuries to the muscles. Made of durable and comfortable material, these splints are apt to efficiently rehabilitate a joint affected by arthritis.
  • Topical Analgesics – Topical treatments like gels, lotions, and creams can also be used to reduce pain and inflammation. They penetrate cleanly into the skin and act on the muscles in an instant, alleviating pain
  • Knee Braces – For knee pain which is very common in arthritis, knee supports can help immobilize the affected knee along with some compression until the pain subsides. They can also support the knee and reduce the stress and strain that falls on the knee.

Aids for Arthritis

There are a number of different aids one can use to reduce the difficulty of executing actions that might become difficult due to arthritis:

  • Dining Aids – Adaptive dining aids such as bendable utensils, comfort grip utensils, rocker knives, cutting boards, adaptive bowls and dishes, weighted utensils and dishes, etc. can ease the process of eating food while dealing with arthritis.
  • Drinking Aids – Adaptive drinking aids such as adaptive mugs, weighted cups and mugs, nosey cups, maddak cups, etc help in easing drinking by reducing spilling.
  • Dressing Aids – While handling arthritis one has to deal with a lot of issues with dressing as it involves a lot of dexterous tasks to execute. Adaptive dressing aids such as dressing sticks, reachers, button aids, sock aids, shoe horns, easy tying laces, etc.
  • Writing Aids – Writing is one of the most difficult and painful activities for a person who suffers from arthritis of any joint in the arm. Adaptive writing aids such as gliders, pen grips, writing instruments, etc. can assist a person while writing and also reduce the discomfort.
  • Household Aids – A person suffering from arthritis might face a number of problems while executing daily activities in the house, and so adaptive household aids such as gripping tools, bottle openers, daily care kits, bath safety kits, adaptive holder, scissors, etc.

Where to Buy Arthritis Aids Online?

At HPFY, we have encapsulated arthritis relief products that make routine tasks easier for people with arthritis. Buy high quality arthritis aids from best manufacturers like the BSN Medical, Biotemper, Patterson Medical, Battle Creek and many more at HPFY.
Other Useful Links:
Types of Arthritis Pain
Fight Arthritis Pain Without Pills

Welcome to the Arthritis Supplies Store from The Wright Stuff

ArthritisSupplies.com provides products that help People with Arthritis perform daily activities!

Shop ArthritisSupplies.com for arthritis products, disability aids, assistive devices, therapy supplies, senior products, handicapped aids, bursitis treatment products and arthritis pain relief aids that make living with arthritis easier.

We specialize in Arthritis Aids – Equipment, Devices and Products that help make living with arthritis easier. We have searched for the best arthritis products, disability aids, assistive devices, therapy supplies, senior products, and handicapped aids that help make living with arthritis pain easier.

Since there is no cure for arthritis, people have to learn how to live with arthritis on a daily basis. But you don’t have to live without arthritis aids. We want to help you do everything you want to do without causing more arthritis pain. Arthritis can make even the most simple tasks, painfully difficult, and our arthritis products can ease that pain. Assistive devices can make living with arthritis easier. Quite often, the right assistive device will allow a person that has arthritis to be independent. The right adaptive living equipment can make challenging everyday tasks less difficult and help protect stressed painful arthritic joints.

Whether you suffer from mild or severe forms of arthritis, you will find helpful arthritis aids here at Arthritis Supplies from The Wright Stuff, Inc.

We strive to satisfy our customers by offering quality products, professional service and competitive pricing.

Let us help you find the products that are “Wright” for you.

21 of the Best-Selling Assistive Devices You Can Buy on Amazon

Fact: More people than ever are being diagnosed with chronic degenerative diseases. Fifty-four million adults and 300,000 children in the U.S. presently have some type of arthritis. Also fact: People are absolutely genius at coming up with ways to help people living with arthritis. In addition to cutting-edge medical treatments, there are a ton of assistive products — both tried-and-true and brand-new — on the market to help make your life easier.

“These types of tools are so important for people with arthritis,” says Tom Ryan, a physical therapist who works with arthritis patients in private practice in Denver, Colorado. “Not only do they help reduce pain, lessen strain on already damaged joints, and improve comfort, but they help people maintain their independence, which is perhaps the most important benefit.”

And what better place to look for assistive devices than in the world’s biggest marketplace? We combed through the best-sellers to find which tools have the highest ratings and the best track record, based on expert opinion and reviews of arthritis patients themselves.

1. Adaptive Utensils

These forks, spoons, and knives simplify eating thanks to wide, lightweight handles covered in rubber for a no-slip grip. “Holding things in a tight grip forces joints to go to the end of their range of motion, which causes irritation and additional inflammation, not to mention pain,” Ryan says. “The wide, light handles allow for a looser grip.” ($13.95/set of 4)

Review: “I ordered the adaptive utensils because I have arthritis in my thumbs and was dropping my silverware all the time. The handles and grips sure make a difference! I washed them on the top shelf in the dishwasher and they were fine.” — Kathy

2. Vi&Vi PocketDresser Multi-Tool

This handy multi-functional tool is the Swiss Army knife of assistive devices. It has two sizes of button hooks, a button loop, a zipper pull, a zipper pick, and a shoelace hook. It comes with a stabilizing hand strap. Plus it folds up neatly and slides into your pocket or purse for ultimate portability. “My patients love tools that help with the basics of getting dressed, but be aware there is a learning curve with these,” Ryan says. Not sure how to use them? He recommends asking your doc or physical therapist for a quick tutorial in their office. ($21.85)

Review: “At the risk of sounding like a gushing fangirl…where has this gadget been all my life?? I have rheumatoid arthritis for 39 years (got it as a kid), and my hands are basically trashed. I tell friends to put mittens on and try to zip and button their pants if they want to get the gist of what dressing’s like for me. The coolest component for me is the big button hook that works on jeans buttons! This opens up a whole lot more options for me when it comes to buying jeans. Only downside is that it’s a bit heavy, which may create issues for some. I plan to get one to keep in my already-a-bit-too-heavy purse, but I think it’s worth it.” — Karol

3. Crutcheze Padded Hand Grips for Walkers

If you use a walker to help you stay mobile, then you know how quickly the metal handles become painful and slippery. The slide-on pads give you a safer and more comfortable hand-hold. Anything that improves comfort and helps people stay mobile is a good investment, Ryan points out. ($19.99/set of 2)

Review: “Following leg surgery I’ve been non-weightbearing for a few weeks, relying on a walker. I was experiencing a lot of pain in my hands trying to use the walker, especially because I have rheumatoid arthritis. After looking at several different brands online I ordered the Crutcheze Walker pads, and only wish I had gotten them four weeks ago. In less than a week of using the Crutcheze my hand pain has been virtually eliminated, making it so much easier to get around with the walker. I’m also going to try them on my crutches, which I’m just starting to use, and will likely order a second pair. These well-constructed pads fit securely without any slipping, and installed in seconds. I did add the extra pad included with the purchase. The Crutcheze pads are worth every penny. Highly recommended!” — Plegendre

4. Bracelet Magic Bracelet Fastener

Having arthritis shouldn’t cramp your style — fashion or otherwise. Unfortunately, tiny jewelry clasps can make accessorizing difficult. This bracelet fastener will help you easily hook your favorite bracelets and necklaces. ($12.95)

Review: “This item arrived beautifully packaged with a full visual color instruction sheet. I have rheumatoid arthritis and was able to put my own bracelet on today. The design and idea is fantastic. Looks very well made and I am sure it will last a long time. I would highly recommend this to anyone needing help with bracelets.” — Anita967

5. Kitchen Krush Multi Kitchen Tool

Cooking can take on a whole new level of challenge when you’re dealing with arthritis. This tool won’t make you a professional chef, but it will make opening all sizes of bottles, jars, and cans a cinch. “It’s not just people with arthritis in their hands or fingers that can need help opening jars and bottles. It also requires a lot of shoulder involvement to rotate your arm and your back to stabilize the movement,” Ryan explains. Because so much more is involved than simply twisting your hand, this type of tool can be a life saver for many people, he adds. ($14.70)

Review: “AMAZING!!! Purchased for my mom with rheumatoid arthritis and she almost cried because she can finally open a bottle with ease! It was effortless and easy to use. The big one you have to make sure its aligned properly with the bigger caps, but easy and effortless nonetheless!! This is a life changer!” — Amazon customer

6. Brix CanKey Ring Pull Can Opener

Popping open a cold beer, soda, or sparkling water at the end of a long day is a pleasure you might have given up, due to how tough those little pull-tabs on the top are. Thankfully this simple device lets you open any ring-top can in seconds. ($5.36)

Review: “ A bit more expensive than other single purpose pull-ring assists but completely worth it. The rubberized ones initially seem soft on my arthritic hands but then fall apart rather quickly and require repair. This one is very lightweight but also seems durable. The arc angle is perfect for both small and large cans of cat food, which is my use of choice. The thin blade makes insertion a snap and the rounded handle is nicely ergonomic. The off-white color blends well in my kitchen but is also easy to identify on the countertop. Highly recommended! A+++++” — Paul

7. Vive Button Hook and Zipper Pull

You never realize how many button-down shirts, jackets, coats, and dresses you own until every little button causes excruciating pain. This pocket-sized combination tool allows you to do up buttons and pull zippers with ease. ($10.49)

Review: “This button hook is such a great old idea reconfigured into a more user-friendly form for folks like myself with less dexterity who experience difficulty performing simple little tasks that we used to take for granted, such as buttoning my shirt or opening and closing a zipper. I bought a second one for my good friend who has arthritis in his hands.” — Bill

8. Royal Medical Solutions Dressing Stick

All the button hooks and zipper pulls in the world won’t be of any use unless you’re able to get your clothes on in the first place. This 28” hooked stick helps you pull on sleeves, pull up pants, and other motions that might be too painful otherwise. Being able to dress yourself saves on embarrassment and is a vital skill for remaining independent, Ryan says. ($14.99)

Review: “I find this stick in combination with my grabber stick invaluable. I use the hook to help when I’m lifting up pants or underwear and I use the other end to help push off pants, socks, underwear, etc. There are lots of videos on YouTube or just a google search to show you how to use this stick depending upon what your issue is (i.e. shoulder, back, etc.) and I strongly recommend watching one or two to get the hang of it.” — Michelle

9. Royal Medical Solutions Deluxe Sock Aid

Pulling on and adjusting socks is one of those things you don’t realize can be really tricky until you struggle with hand and wrist pain or mobility. This plastic device allows you to slip socks on and pull them over your feet with minimal effort. ($9.95)

Review: “Ad pictures don’t do this justice; it is really easy to use, but you should put the sock completely on the puller. With size 14 foot and size 13 cotton socks, it works like a charm. Can pull them all the way up my ankle and leg. At first, I did not put the sock on far enough, but that is the trick. You also might want to put a clean sock on your good foot, if you have one, to stretch it, then put that sock on the Puller. I am 79 and can not put a sock on my left foot; this tool is wonderful.” — Gary

10. Northwest Medical Posturite Writing Board

Arthritis in your neck, upper back, hands, or arms can make writing or reading a real pain (literally). This board, designed specifically for patients with medical issues like arthritis, adjusts to the perfect ergonomic angle to hold your papers or book. It’s also magnetic, allowing you to keep pens and paper exactly where you want them. Office tools like this can help you keep doing your job without sacrificing your joints, Ryan says. ($129)

Review: “I really like this board, highly recommend. Also helps with posture.” — Sane

11. Able Life Universal Stand Assist

Sitting down feels like a relief but having to stand back up — especially if you have limited mobility in your knees — may make you think twice about lounging on the couch for a Netflix marathon. This metal frame tucks neatly into most couches, giving you a portable handle to use to stand up without risk of falling. “You have to have quite a bit of hip and knee mobility to sit without falling and then stand up again, which is something many people with arthritis lack,” Ryan says. Having something to hold onto, like this rail, can be invaluable for preventing injury and maintaining proper form, he adds. ($79)

Review: “Indispensable. Easily assembled and customizable. After three visits, my wife’s physical therapist could not resist asking details about Stand Assist. He was impressed. Ordered and bit the bullet paying for overnight delivery and has seen constant and welcome service from day one. Very adjustable which enhances the ease with which one can rise from a seated position. Very well constructed and sturdy enough to rely upon. We are considering purchasing a new chair confident the Stand Assist will accommodate any new chair. Our current chair is a recliner and the Stand Assist rides with the tilted seating surface seamlessly.” —Paperworker

12. Carex Upeasy Seat Assist

If you need a little more help standing up from a seated position, this adjustable, movable, cushioned seat will give you a good boost ― doing 70 percent of the work needed to get up. It comes in two sizes, depending on what you weigh. ($83.76)

Review: “I’m a 60-year-old woman that is extremely active and works hard, physically, every day. About six months ago I began having trouble with my right knee…swelling, painful…for no apparent reason. Doc said it’s arthritis. I started having trouble standing up from a seated position. Then two weeks ago, I fell. I broke my left ankle in two places. Getting up from a seated position was almost impossible. I didn’t want a lift recliner. I found this Upeasy Seat and, if I could dance right now, I would certainly “cut-a-rug”!!! Everything immediately got way better for me!! It does exactly as advertised! I’ve only had it for a little over a week so I can’t speak of it longevity. If it lasted only three months, I would still buy it.” — C Higgins

13. AdirMed Adjustable Bed Rail

Getting out of bed with arthritis doesn’t need to require advanced level gymnastics or an embarrassing slide off the side. This sturdy, movable chair rail tucks under your mattress to give you a firm grip to sit or stand. As a bonus, it comes with a pouch to keep your glasses, phone, and other essentials at arm’s reach. “This is great for people who may not have a lot of the back and leg strength needed to move from lying down to sitting and then from sitting to standing,” Ryan says. “It can also help prevent falls.” ($29.99)

Review: “Adair’s soft comfort grip handle and its rock-solid frame changed my waking experience. Arthritis makes even rolling over a difficulty. My new under-mattress, stable, bed assist handle helps as I reach for it to turn over, sit up safely, swing my legs out and grip it comfortably, holding on until all my muscles engage and my legs feel secure beneath me, (I might even flex my knees on rainy days) and then I can walk away, upright. Fear of falling made me lean way over as I got out of bed unassisted, afraid to fall in attempting to stand upright. I walked hunched over away from my bed. Now I begin my day upright and find it way easier to maintain an upright position all day. The black Adair handle is practically invisible, too, it makes middle of the night search for an extra blanket an easy find: prettily folded over the arm of my Adair bed handle assistant.” — Cheetah

14. PalliPartners Pull-On Knee Cushions

Kneeling down can be excruciating with arthritis but these knee cushions provide the padding that nature no longer does, making it easier to do things like garden, clean, or get on the floor to play with children. They also help keep your knees apart during sleep, allowing a more comfortable position. ($15.99/set of 2)

Review: “Very comfortable I had arthroscopic surgery on both knees in 13 months twice on left knee six months apart. My knees still pop sometimes turning over and swell overnight I found three solutions: this for the right knee, a compression knee pillow on the left, and compression sleeve during the day. Both cushions at night help with hip pain also. Very happy.” — Storm

15. Back Support Systems Wedge Pillow

Arthritis in your back or legs may make finding a comfortable sleeping position feel impossible. This wedge pillow takes the pressure off your back while aligning your joints so you can get the rest you need. It comes in four sizes for different heights. Orthotic pillows and supports can be a great tool but they only help if they fit your body just right, Ryan says. Ill-fitting devices can cause more problems than they solve so make sure to follow size charts and you can always take your device in to your PT so they can evaluate the fit for you, he adds.

“Any type of back, leg, knee, or neck pillows should make you feel instantly very comfortable. If they take a lot of adjustment or cause numbness or pinching, they’re not a good fit for you,” he says. ($69.97)

Review: “This was exactly what I’ve been looking for. Regular pillows were just not doing it anymore. I really needed something with enough height and firmness to really lift my knees up enough to take the strain off of my lower back. The cover is soft, the whole thing seems to be fine quality. I’m almost giddy, having found exactly what I’ve searched for.” — Beemom

16. UTTU Sandwich Pillow

To round out your deluxe sleeping experience, this ergonomic memory foam pillow provides support and alignment for your neck and spine, taking the pressure off uncomfortable joints. It adjusts in height to provide best fit for you. ($39.99)

Review: “It is sooo comfortable. The shorter height is perfect for me, and the curved shape is perfect for my ovaloid noggin. The foam is just the right softness. It seems crazy that a pillow would make such a difference in my sleep, but thus far I have slept upon it for about a week and I no longer turn about in my sleep to get comfortable; I find that I lie down, feel extremely comfortable, fall asleep, and wake up in the same position but completely refreshed! It’s unreal. Feels almost like latex.” — Recycled

17. Vive Extended Shoe Horn

Getting shoes on and off can be a real struggle and while a regular shoe horn can help, it won’t be of much good if you have trouble bending over. This shoe horn has a 24” handle, making it simple to slide on your shoes while still standing. “Using a standing shoe horn decreases strain on both your back and your hands,” Ryan says. ($14.99)

Review: “I thought this might be a useful item but did not realize just how great it was to be able to slip on my shoes on the first try, and not destroy the back of the shoes. I have limited mobility and the long length of this shoe horn, combined with what feels to be a sturdy plastic was a pleasant surprise. It does take some practice to get used to using it, but then you wonder how you were doing it without it.” — Ken

18. Emilio Torazzi Large Scissors

Cutting requires a manual dexterity and hand strength that many arthritis patients simply don’t have. These large scissors have rubberized handles to prevent dangerous slips and extra sharp blades so you don’t need to apply as much pressure. Similar to assistive utensils, anything that allows you to use a more relaxed grip is a good idea, Ryan says. ($10.95)

Review: “Great scissors. Of higher quality than that found in most stores and for a price below retail. Will definitely be back for future purchases.” — Julian

19. Zen Toes Toe Separators

Toe arthritis can be one of the most frustrating types — you never realize how much you rely on the little guys until they start hurting — so keeping them comfy is a top priority. These gel toe separators do the trick nicely. ($9.49/pack of 4)

Review: “I really like these. They are well made, comfortable, and really make a difference with my problem of an overlapping toe. I like the material it seems sturdy also I like the way the product is kept in place by hooking onto another toe. Other products I’ve tried tended to slip or move as I walked making them very uncomfortable to wear. Also these keep your toes straight and in the correct position.” G.R. Pearson

20. Royal Medical Solutions Long Grabber Reacher Tool

Picking things up is definitely one of those things that you take for granted — that is, until arthritis makes it painful to bend over, much less pick up small objects. These sturdy metal 26” grabber tools will allow you to easily pick things up off the floor or reach items on shelves. “These are one of the tools my patients find the most handy, they love them,” Ryan says. “Just be careful reaching overhead with them, they should only be used to pick up very light items if you’re reaching up.” ($19.99/set of 2)

Review: “I am disabled and have mobility problems as well as bending and stooping to reach anything on the floor. These grabbers are the best things I have ever used to help me reach items that have become unreachable for me. They save me many extremely painful steps to walk for things and help me pick up items that previously I just had to leave on the floor for someone else to retrieve later. As an example of how good the grip is, I have been able to pick up really small pills that have hit the floor. The grabbers are that good to get an item that tiny! I also pick up my shoes to put on and then use it to put them away. I even use it to help me pull clothes from the washer and dryer as I do laundry. Both machines are too deep for me to reach the bottom or back to get all items. The grabbers have made all the difference. I highly recommend it!” — Kitty

21. Ziraki Coccyx Seat Cushion

People don’t often talk about arthritis pain in their butt but it’s a real problem. (Okay, technically, it’s usually arthritis of the SI and hip joints.) This sturdy, thick, padded seat will have you sitting pretty without worrying about sliding off even slick metal chairs. Ryan adds a note of caution: “Sitting on padded seats can be destabilizing for some joints in the hips and lower back. Some people find that it makes sitting much more comfortable, but check with your doctor before using one as it is sometimes better for some patients to sit on a very firm surface instead,” he says. ($18.99)

Review: “I have bought so many cushions to relieve the pain I suffer from a broken tailbone complicated by arthritis, that I have lost count. I can’t believe the relief I have experienced with this cushion. As a matter of fact I am writing this review while ordering two additional cushions, one to keep in my car, and another one for my computer chair. They are in addition to the original one I purchased to keep in my living room. I would highly recommend this cushion to my friends, or anyone with problems similar to mine.” — LMS

Keep Reading

  • Got Painsomnia? 9 Patient-Tested Tips to Help You Feel Better
  • 22 Self-Care Ideas for Arthritis Absolutely Worth Trying
  • VIDEO: Why Osteoarthritis Is a Serious Disease

If you have arthritis, self-help devices can make tasks easier on your joints and more efficient for you. These products, which range from simple to elaborate, help keep joints in the best position for functioning, provide leverage when needed, and extend your range of motion. Simple arthritis self-help devices, such as jar openers, reachers and easy-grip utensils can be purchased at many hardware or medical supply stores.

• In the bedroom. When dressing, zipper pulls and buttoning aids can help you fasten clothing. Or you can choose to wear clothing with Velcro fasteners, if available. A long-handled shoehorn extends your reach without bending.

• In the kitchen. In the kitchen, appliances such as electric can openers, food processors and mandolins (for slicing) make work easier. Reachers (long-handled tools with a gripping mechanism) can be used to retrieve items stored high or low. Built-up handles and grips make utensils easier to grasp and put less stress on finger joints. Install a fixed jar opener, or keep a rubber jar opener in the kitchen.

• In the bathroom. Tub bars and handrails provide additional stability and security when you are getting into and out of the bath or shower. These are a must if you have problems with balance. Faucet levers or tap turners are available if your grip is weak. A raised toilet seat can make it easier to sit down and get up from the toilet.

• In the office. In the work environment, many devices and modifications are available, from chairs and work surfaces with adjustable-height to telephones with large push buttons and hands-free headsets. If you are facing work modifications, you may want to see an occupational therapist about arthritis self-help tools. He or she can help you make changes and obtain the devices you need.

• At play. Leisure activities can still be enjoyable through the use of assistive arthritis devices, such as kneelers and light-weight hoses for gardening, “no-hands” frames for quilting or embroidery, and card holders and shufflers for card games.

• In the car. When driving, a wide key holder can make it much easier to turn on the ignition. A gas cap opener can help when filling the tank at the gas station.

Ultrasonic Hands Could Give Robots a Lighter Touch

Hands Off

A Swiss researcher has created a prototype robot hand that moves objects without ever touching them.

The system exploits a phenomenon that’s been around for 80 years — and it has the potential to bring the benefits of robotics to a wider range of industries in the future.

Magic Robot Hand

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich researcher Marcel Schuck’s robot hand looks like a bisected sphere on the end of a standard robot arm.

Each half of the sphere contains numerous tiny loudspeakers. By precisely controlling the ultrasound waves emitted from the speakers using custom software, Schuck can suspend a small object between the two halves of the sphere — a phenomenon called “acoustic levitation.”

He can even move the object around in midair by manipulating the direction of the waves.

Watch Out

Schuck now plans to survey experts from various industries to explore applications for his ultrasonic robot hand. But he can already think of at least one potential use that’s particularly appropriate given that his lab is based in Switzerland: watchmaking.

“Toothed gearwheels, for example, are first coated with lubricant, and then the thickness of this lubricant layer is measured,” he said in a press release. “Even the faintest touch could damage the thin film of lubricant.”

READ MORE: This ultrasonic gripper could let robots hold things without touching them

More on robot hands: New Robot Hand Works Like a Venus Flytrap to Grip Objects

10 Of The Most Useful Assistive Devices For Arthritis

For the approximately 175 million people who suffer from arthritis worldwide, simple daily tasks can be painful and difficult. From opening a jar to standing for long periods of time, the pressure and strain on aching joints can make going about the day a trial. This pain can even make people give up the activities they love. Fortunately, there are many different assistive devices for arthritis that can help make tasks and activities less painful and easier. Here are ten of the most useful assistive devices for arthritis.

1. Button hook

No need to give up button-down shirts with this handy little gadget. A tapered end slides through the buttonhole to grab the button and pull it through. This can be especially helpful first thing in the morning when fingers are stiff and uncooperative.

2. Doorknob grips

If you are in a house with round doorknobs instead of lever handle doorknobs, simply getting out of your room can be a challenge. These slip-on doorknob grips are an affordable assistive device for arthritis without having to change all of the doorknobs in your house.

3. Can, bottle, and jar openers

One of the biggest struggles of the day may be opening jars, bottles, and cans. These assistive devices vary between mounted and hand-held models that can open the most stubborn containers.

4. Cooking and eating utensils

Especially for foodies, arthritis can make time in the kitchen an exercise in misery. These knives, cutting boards, and utensils feature wider or more ergonomically-designed handles for ease of use. The non-slip cutting boards make cutting and chopping safer.

Avid cooks may also want to consider purchasing a cushioned mat to stand on. Long periods of standing can exacerbate arthritis pain in the feet, knees, hips, and back. These can also be used for any activity that involves long periods of standing, such as painting.

5. Sitting, standing, and walking aids

Mobility can be extremely impacted for those with arthritis in the lower extremities. Simply standing up from a seated position can be difficult. These assistive devices are designed to help people with arthritis move easily around their house.

One of the traps of arthritis is that because movement is painful, many people move less. This decrease in movement leads to stiffer joints, which leads to more pain. By providing a simple assistive device to make moving around the house easier, movement is promoted and pain may decrease.

6. Assistive devices for driving

Many without arthritis take driving and all of the accompanying actions for granted. Opening the door, buckling a seatbelt, turning the car on: all of these can be very painful for someone suffering from arthritis. These assistive devices range from seatbelt helpers to swivels for getting in and out of the car.

Maintaining mobility in this way means that an arthritis sufferer can still go for walks, get themselves to and from physical therapy, and visit with friends.

7. Gardening devices

Being outside in nature is therapeutic and soothing, elevating mood and administering a daily dose of vitamin D. Some arthritis patients are unable to tend their plants. These adaptive devices and seating options make working outside more comfortable for the avid gardener. Raised beds are another way to adapt this activity for easier access.

8. Golfing gear

If a person with arthritis has limited their tee time due to pain, these special golf grips may help. These grips are larger and have extra nubs and grippy material so that the golfer can use less strength. For arthritic hands, this can be a way to stay in the game.

9. Braces and orthotics

While not glamorous or beautiful, braces and orthotics can provide support and compression that can help with pain in arthritic joints. Many of these braces are lightweight and easy to adjust with Velcro tabs. This makes application and removal easier and encourages their use when needed.

10. Technology

While some of these products are designed for those with low vision, these large format keyboards and wireless mice with cushioned pads can be very helpful for those who spend a lot of time on the computer.

There are other things to consider when looking for assistive devices for arthritis.

Does it help maintain independence? For people with arthritis, maintaining their independence is an important part of treatment. Any assistive devices that require two people to use may defeat the purpose. Look for easy-to-use devices.

Will the device itself adapt? Even when carefully managed and controlled with a comprehensive treatment plan, many types of arthritis will gradually increase in severity. Look for assistive devices for arthritis that can adapt if the pain gets worse. These devices may have one or two levels of assistance. For example, a silicon jar opener may have two sides, one with more grip than the other. While this seems a minor detail, it is worth considering.

Is the device actually necessary? Consider the type and location of arthritis before purchasing an adaptive device. If the arthritis is located primarily in the hands, it makes no sense to look for orthotics or braces for the lower legs. Think of actions that are made difficult by arthritis pain, and focus initial purchases on those.

Does the device actually work? Talking with other arthritis patients and reading review of products online before you purchase is a must. There are many assistive devices for arthritis on the market, but not all of them are effective. Take some time for research before spending any money.

Have you used a specific assistive device for arthritis? Which one did you try, and what did you think?

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Best Kitchen Utensils for Arthritic Hands: Reducing Pain and Injuries at the Same Time

Arthritis just makes life more difficult. Perhaps this is more evident in the kitchen than anywhere else.

Arthritis can keeps you from performing everyday tasks such as cooking and even eating. You don’t want that. As you get older, you need to focus on maintaining your independence in every way.

If you have trouble cooking or eating because of arthritis, there are a number of options that can help. Here are some ideas for the best kitchen utensils for arthritic hands.

Table of Contents

Arthritis and Your Hands

Arthritis can affect any joint in your body. But, it is most common in people’s hands. It causes pain and swelling and makes the affected areas stiff and immobile. There are a number of causes of arthritis but no cure yet. Most sufferers treat the symptoms and learn to work with their new limitations.

Because arthritis so commonly affects the joints in the hand, it makes cooking or eating utensils hard to hold. Once simple tasks like opening up cans and jars of food are suddenly difficult. This reduces your pleasure in this basic but essential need. Not eating properly leads to bigger problems such as malnutrition.

Food Prep Utensils

You are more likely to injure yourself in the kitchen while prepping food to cook. This is when the sharper tools are used. Also, this is when more hand strength is required. So, pain is usually greater here too. Using the proper kitchen utensils for arthritic hands helps reduce this pain.

Knives

Safety must always come first. If your hands are sore, swollen or weakened by arthritis, you may have trouble gripping knives in order to cut up food. A nasty accident may result.

If you still prefer to use a knife, there are many options with handles that are designed for people with arthritis. Some handles are thicker than normal handles. Some have lots of padding to make them easier to hold. Other knives have handles that are even twisted at a right angle to the blade so they’re easier and safer to use.

You can even find rocking knives. These cutting blades require much less strength and dexterity and easily cut almost any type of food. Try a few of these options to find out what works for you and your limitations.

Slicers

If you still have trouble cutting food even with knives that are designed for arthritic hands, a slicer might help. These are made of plastic or metal and you only need one hand to cut food. A mandoline slicer is much safer and easier to use than a knife.

They also give you perfect results every time and make clean-up simple. Vegetables, fruits, and even hard cheeses are easily sliced by these helpful kitchen tools. There are also handheld plastic options that are much safer for weak or unsteady hands.

Chopping and Cutting Boards

If you have trouble holding onto food and cutting at the same time, it’s worth taking a look at your cutting board. Your cutting board should always be a safe and stable surface. So, if it slips on your counter, try putting a non-slip mat underneath. This will help you stay safe no matter what food preparation task you are performing.

There are also a number of options other than a traditional flat board. Cutting boards can be modified with built-up sides to stop food from slipping. Some even have prongs to hold items in place. These additions will hold the food in place for you. Then you are free to keep two hands on the knife.

You can also buy boards that have food graters or other helpful additions already built in. Before trying any of these options, consider how you use your cutting board and what features you are likely to use often. That’s the best way to get the most from your choice.

Ladles, Spatulas, and Peelers

The key element here is padding. If you have arthritis in the joints in your hand you will probably have trouble gripping handles. This can severely limit what foods you can cook, and even how you prepare or cook your meals.

Look for utensils that have padded handles that are made of a soft material and doesn’t hurt your joints. You should also make sure that the handle material is non-slip. This minimizes the chances of dropping them on the floor or into the pan. For an option that works for almost any limitation, try utensils with twisted handles that are designed for easier gripping.

Utensils for Feeding and Eating

Once you are done with the cooking you need to be able to eat what you’ve made. This can be difficult with arthritis because normal cutlery is usually small and hard to grip.

Eating Utensils

Standard eating flatware causes several problems for people with arthritis. Your fingers can slip and slide over metal handles. Or, you may lack the strength to press down and cut food into bite-sized pieces.

One option to help with that is cutlery with padded handles. These tools have a thick material on the handles that is non-slip and soft. That way, it won’t press painfully on your joints. You can also buy utensils that have handles that are angled so you don’t have to painfully twist your wrist to hold on to them. Combining these utensils with scoop plates or bowls really makes eating easier for many elderly people.

If one of your hands is more severely affected than the other, try some of the all-in-one options. These are utensils that have a fork on the end plus an edge for cutting food on the other. This type of flatware is very helpful if you only use one hand. There are also options that feature a spoon on the other end rather than a fork. These are great tools for people who have a lot of trouble with normal cutlery.

RELATED GUIDE: Soft Foods for Elderly People

Eating Utensil Clips and Straps

Another option that might help is eating utensil clips or straps. These are usually made of plastic, cotton or leather and help arthritic hands hold onto the utensils. They have a little pocket to hold the edge of the utensil. Then the strap fastens around the hand to help the user hold onto the fork or spoon easier. Some models even hold your spoon or fork completely if you can’t grip it yourself. These tools may not work for everyone. Some seniors say aiming the utensil is difficult. There are occasional complaints about them pinching the hand.

Final Thoughts

Learning to cope with arthritis is an ongoing adjustment. It can negatively affect so many different parts of your life. Arthritis in the hands affects everything from getting ready in the mornings to using a computer mouse. But there are many options that help you overcome your limitations and help you maintain your independence.

Another idea is to use spill-proof cups if spills are common. You can learn more about those here. There are even special mugs for your morning joe too!

The ability to cook is key if you want to stay healthy and happy. Even if you only use a microwave for meals, you still need to stir and prep food. So, kitchen utensils for arthritic hands are very important tools. It is also not a bad idea to look into lightweight cookware for use in the kitchen. Experimenting with some of these options will help you enjoy cooking and eating once more, and give you back an important part of your life.

Do you have any tips or suggestions to help arthritic hand pain in the kitchen? Is there a tool or gadget that you have tried that helped? Let me know about it in the comments below!

Arthritis: Kitchen Utensils Care Products

Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more joints. There are more than a hundred kinds of arthritis. Most of these kinds can be cured through proper treatment. However, if the arthritis is not treatable, it is said to be chronic. Treatable or not, this disease causes a lot of pain along with reduced mobility. We try to make this illness period of yours as comfortable as possible. Our specially made healthcare products allow you to live a more normal life by helping minimize arthritis pain. We offer a wide range of products for kitchen support. These utensils are custom-made for Arthritis patients. If you have to cook for some unavoidable reason, we offer a range of kitchen utensils.

Arthritis Kitchen Openers

One of the more common problems that arthritis patients face is opening jar caps. Opening these jars can cause a lot of pain in the patient’s finger, wrist and shoulder. Our range of jar and bottle openers have now made it possible for patients to open jar lids while reducing hand and finger pain. These openers offer a good grip and are easy to use.

Plates and Bowl Support

Eating from a flat or semi flat plate makes it difficult for the patient to eat pushing food off their plate. He has to use both his hands to trap the food. Our products help make eating less stressful for patients with arthritis. In addition to this, we provide spoons specially designed for Arthritis patients. These spoons are made at an angle so that you can eat your food without having to twist your wrist.

Cups and Cup Holders

Arthritis patients find it very difficult to hold cups. It causes pain in their finger and wrist joints. We have numerous cup and cup-holders to help make holding cups easier for people with arthritis. These cups have extended handles that allow you to grip your drink more easily. Straw holders are available to make it simpler for you to take a sip without having the need of holding the straw. We also offer a variety of cup holders just in case you do not want to have to hold your cup in you hand.

Easy to Use Knives

When you are preparing food in the kitchen, you will sometimes need to use the knife for cutting or peeling food. This job is very difficult for healthy people, imagine what arthritis patients go through while doing these things. However, there are some circumstances where the patients do not have any other choice but to use the knife. The knives offered by our company make it easier for an arthritis patient to cut or even peal their food.

We know that a cure for arthritis is not available. In fact there are some diseases which even doctors cannot treat. All we can do is to help make your life as comfortable as possible. We are committed to helping you through our products which will allow you to lead a more normal and happy life.

Click here to see our Silverware, Tableware, and Utensils for Arthritis Sufferers

Help & Care, LLC

Elderly people affected by conditions like stroke, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, Parkinson’s tremors or poor fine motor skills often have trouble to eat independently. Hand tremors or weakness can make holding utensils and making hand or arm movements almost impossible. For this reason some seniors lose their appetite and stop eating.

Eating can be a pleasure again with adaptive plates and cups or special needs utensils.

For Parkinson’s, hand tremors or weakness

  • Weighted Eating Utensil Set (4pcs.) with Contoured Handles

The weight of the utensil decreases the shakiness and enables the individual to feed themselves with much better control of the utensil.

  • 3-Compartment Scoop Dish with high sides

3 compartments are helpful to keep foods separate, high sides make scooping easy.

  • Easy Grip Drinking Cup

Double handles are helpful to keep spills to a minimum. Good for adults with a weak grip, shaking hands, Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s and who need to drink in bed.

For Alzheimer’s or dementia

  • Redware Dining Set

This dining set is designed to increase appetite in Alzheimer’s patients. Red color helps increase food intake of Alzheimer’s patients by 24% and liquid intake by 84%.

Elderly with Arthritis or hand mobility issues

  • UBend™ It Bendable Utensils

U Bend It Utensils are the perfect cutlery solution for people with upper extremity weakness or reduced range of motion. Reducing wrist strain, both the fork and teaspoon are ideal for either arthritic hands or stiff wrists and elbows. These stainless steel utensils feature a twist in the shaft that allows it to be easily hand-bent to the left or right – at any angle comfortable to the user. Tab on end can be used to attach a wrist strap.

  • Utensil Holder

People with Dupuytren’s Contractures of the hand, severe Rheumatoid Arthritis, quadriplegia, or other upper extremity disabilities that cause grasping difficulties, find it almost impossible to hold regular eating utensils. This special utensil enables to hold a fork, spoon or knife securely and easily for dining.

  • Foam Tubing

Especially helpful for those with Osteo or Rheumatoid Arthritis. Enlarging the handles of such things as toothbrushes, combs, eating utensils, pens or pencils will greatly improve their grasping abilities.

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