There are a range of products on the market right now that can help to give carers a little peace of mind when it comes to a loved one’s safety. We all know about grab rails and safety cups, but here are a few more clever devices you may not have heard off.
Our eye was caught by this Floor Pressure Mat, which comes with a non-slip base and is suitable for home use as well as nursing/care homes. You position it on the floor so that if your loved one wanders from a safe area and crosses the mat it sends a wireless signal to a receiver that alerts you that they are on the move. It’s a great device to position in a doorway so that you catch them as they move from one room to another.
For more safety in the kitchen, have you considered a kettle tipper? These ingenious devices allow a loved one to make a hot drink but help to steady the kettle so that spills and splashes can’t occur. It also helps with the weight of the kettle if the user can’t lift well. This one can be used with most styles of kettle but some are only for cordless – do check before buying.
Carrying objects around safely can become harder as dementia progresses. To help, a tray trolley allows the user to transport trays of food, magazines, drinks etc safely and also gives them a little extra support as they move around. The best are multi-tiered like this one.
In the bathroom, as well as non-slip bath mats and grab rails, you might want to try the Magiplug (although please note this is not a substitute for watching over a loved one who needs the extra help). This plug only allows a bath to fill to a certain point before it automatically lets the water out, which means that it stops any overflow situations. It also changes colour if the water is too hot, although that may not be visible through bubble bath etc.
Lastly, you can help a loved one with drinking issues by giving them one of these clever one-way straws. One-way straws have a valve that means the straw stays full of liquid even when the person drinking removes their lips. This helps to prevent taking in lots of air and reduces the likelihood of coughing. It also helps if the user finds it hard to draw up enough liquid in one go. The straws can be clipped onto the side of the cup, and washed up as normal, thus reducing waste.