Ellen and her daughter Emily often rely on the same life hacks to help them out throughout their days. Ellen and Emily both have Larsen Syndrome, a rare orthopedic disorder that affects their upper and lower extremities. Check out these hacks they’ve discovered that make their everyday tasks a little easier.
Handle extensions. While showering, Ellen often relies on handle extensions to help with things like shaving her legs and cleaning the shower door when she’s finished. “I use a disposable razor that fits into a plastic extension handle,” she writes. A special extension handle really isn’t necessary to complete this task – “any plastic handle and duct tape will suffice,” she writes, which is exactly how she added an extension to the shower squeegee to make cleaning a breeze.
Water-resistant adhesive hooks. “I use several of these so all my adaptive supplies are easily within reach.”
Getting dressed. Ellen uses adaptive tools to help her with dressing including a plastic sock aid to help with putting on socks and a reaching stick to help her with her pants. She prefers using the reaching stick over the dressing stick “because it gets a firmer grip on the pants,” she shares. Lastly, she puts her shoes on with the help of a long-handled shoe horn.
Team Effort Hacks
“My daughter and I can mostly accomplish dressing from the waist up independently, but we still find we need to help each other out quite often.”
For example, tops made of knit fabrics with stretch are easier for Ellen and Emily to put on by themselves due to their elbow contractures, but “if there is a “must have” piece of clothing that is too difficult to don independently, we usually can help each other out,” says Ellen.
They also help one another with jewelry. And although Ellen says she has deliberately avoided wearing panty hose for the past 15 years due to the struggle of getting them on, when he daughter wants to wear panty hose, she helps out. “It’s quite a process, but we make it work,” Ellen shares.
What life hacks do you depend on daily to help make things go a little more smoothly? Share them with us, and you could be featured on AbleThrive!