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Useful gadgets for the elderly

(19 Posts)
CMOTDibbler Thu 02-Jan-14 16:18:46

I bought my parents a couple of these stick on, battery powered, motion sensitive nightlights, and they are excellent for adding some light on landings, stairs, bathroom.

Mum forgets to put the light on at night, and now shes wandering at night we needed to find something to reduce the fall risk - and their house is rubbish for plug points.

Anyone else found useful things?

ohfourfoxache Fri 03-Jan-14 02:06:16

My grandma could never remember what day, date, month it was. We found an electronic calendar (probably about a 10 inch screen) that not only showed the time, but the day, date, month and year. It was particularly helpful as she went to my mum for dinner 4 days a week and my aunt the other 3 but she couldn't keep track of where she was due to be. It helped enormously.

Trumpton Fri 03-Jan-14 02:17:56

My mother had an A4 page a day diary that I filled for her with what she was doing each day . Eg. Day centre ,taxi will come at 10am. Meals on wheels due 11.45 . I printed sticky labels and stuck them in. Also used to to write things like DD called in at 1pm stayed until 3pm we talked about yr brother etc. each night as she went up to bed she would draw a thick line through that day.
She had been a psychiatric nurse and was vey organised even when riddled with Altzheimers .

MIL is very much in receipt of her faculties but at 90 is getting physically more frail . ( although can still shop as an Olympic sport ) we have just got her a Hot Water Dispenser so she does not have to lift a boiling kettle.

CMOTDibbler Fri 03-Jan-14 10:19:54

Great idea on the hot water dispenser

Another thing that has helped, is buying the cheapest possible microwave with just two dials (one for power, one for time) and using sticky labels to block off everything past 5 minutes and normal power.

The white with black markings is v easy to read and theres plenty of room to add a really large number with a permanent pen if needed

Needmoresleep Fri 03-Jan-14 15:18:55

What I would like is an electronic calender as Trumpton describes but which I could update remotely. Eg I could add doctors appointments, visits from members of the family etc, and she then only sees what she has on that day. Perhaps with an alarm to alert her beforehand.

Diaries are not working as my mother finds it hard to remember what day of the week it is.

Even better if carers could input so I would know that tablets were taken and that, say, sheets were changed. So sort of Outlook which could be stored on-line and then my mother would have a calender/clock which just showed the appointments, day of the week and time.

If it does not exist already perhaps I could give it to DS as a project.

Trumpton Fri 03-Jan-14 22:27:01

Would " log me in" work I wonder ? But it would mean her computer being on all the time .

Needmoresleep Sat 04-Jan-14 21:08:32

No computer. She has Alzheimers. Can't do much more than press the on/off switch on her TV.

Its really that you get these calenders which are a bit like digital photos. Would be nice to be able to add appointments. At the moment like you I try to fill things into her diary. However it is a 5 hour round trip each time. And really frustrating to keep calling her when I know she needs to go to something and find she has forgotten and gone out.

The technology is there I am sure. It would be nice though to find that someone has already packaged it into an easily useable form.

dementedma Sun 12-Jan-14 21:35:11

Dad has a little phone,like a mobile,but with 8 preprogrammed numbers. The front has a list of names on, no dialling options, so he just taps the name he wants e.g James,Kate,Doctor etc and he doesn't have to try and remember numbers. He has it on a cord around his neck so he can use it upstairs or outside too.

punny Sun 12-Jan-14 21:39:37

Stick masking tape over all buttons on the remote control for the tv etc only leaving volume, change channel, on, off and guide. You can write on the masking tape what each button does so they don't get confused

NotGoodNotBad Wed 15-Jan-14 19:41:57

My has a gadget something like this for picking things up without bending down, she loves it.

NotGoodNotBad Wed 15-Jan-14 19:53:54

My mum that is...

rightsaidfrederick Thu 23-Jan-14 18:04:40

I have to say that the electric scooter has been a godsend - she may be 92 and barely able to walk beyond her own front gate, but with the scooter she is able to go down to the local shops by herself to buy all the basics, go out with her friends to the local cafe and generally retain her sense of independence. It also means that we can take her on day trips to places like National Trust houses.

Ditto the stairlift (who the fuck thinks that retiring to a four storey house is a good idea?!)

Electric tin opener - great for arthritic hands

Cordless landline in every room that is regularly used, so that there is at least some hope of her getting there in time to answer it.

The pharmacist makes up weekly pill packets for her, with compartments days of the week and morning / noon / evening / night. This is a free service, but of course getting her to remember to take them is another matter entirely <sigh>

And not a gadget at all, but a cleaner (who's been with us so long that she's more of a family friend) who comes in for a few hours a week - without her the house would be completely unmanageable for all concerned. She's also rather good at keeping an eye on things, and spotting problems before they arise, so that we can pre-empt it.

I am still, however, convinced that in the event of a fall she'd lie there all night rather than press the emergency call button that's around her neck. The one and only time she did fall, she picked herself up and neglected to mention that her arm was hurting for two days hmm

SalvatoreGirl Thu 30-Jan-14 15:59:40

Thank you Dibbler I have just bought a set of the lights for my DH to use at night when he has to get up to empty his colostomy bag - now he won't wake me up each time by putting the light on in the ensuite

roadwalker Thu 30-Jan-14 16:11:02

rightsaidfrederick- you can get a fall sensor
If you ring your local social services an Occupational Therapist should be able to provide one

skyblue11 Mon 03-Mar-14 21:43:39

The flipper remote is a godsend, forget the masking tape get this, saved me no end if trips
Search flipper remote on amazon

skyblue11 Mon 03-Mar-14 21:45:49

And even better a big button phone where quick dials are photos, brilliant as they have a really loud ring and adjustable volume, I'm looking for a clock with day date but they are about 70 quid....

Tensmumym Mon 17-Mar-14 22:15:33

skyblue Sorry, can't do links on the phone but you can get cheaper day/date clocks if you look on the Argos website. Great thread CMOT. I agree the grabbers are very useful. I must look into the light sensors. Trumpton - could you link to the hot water dispenser you found?

BasilMalaise Tue 18-Mar-14 15:50:49

This might do the trick. Not sure if it is available in the UK though.

miggygreene Mon 24-Mar-14 06:39:36

I bought granny an "easy reacher" she really loves to keep her home clean. Made from lightweight yet strong aluminium, so yes it's not that heavy to carry.. and she loved it so much!

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