While attempting to do everything the ‘right way’ during stroke recovery (i.e. by using your affected limbs) is highly therapeutic – it’s not always possible.
For one, there might not be enough movement to complete the task normally; and two, you can’t expect yourself to do everything the hard way all the time.
It’s exhausting and can lead to burnout.
So do everything the ‘long way’ as often as you can – but when you need a break, see if any of these tools can help.
*We are not affiliated with any of these 5 products. They’re simply cool tools that we found on Pinterest and wanted to share.
1. To Cook with One Hand
While getting back into the kitchen after stroke, you probably find yourself faced with the question, “Should I do this whole thing quickly with one hand, or should I spend 5x as long doing it with with both hands?”
And the answer is different for everyone.
Do you have enough movement to cook with both hands? Then do that as often as possible.
Do you suffer from hand paralysis and need to cook with one hand? Then investing in some tools could be a great choice.
Here’s a one-handed cooking system from Yanko that we found:
It allows you to prop up your food and hold it in place while you cook.
2. To Get In and Out of the Car
If you have trouble getting in and out of your car, then a swivel seat cushion could be just the thing you need.
It adds extra comfort to your rump, and allows you to get in and out of your vehicle safer.
3. To Read Paper Books Again
Book readers, rejoice! You don’t have to give up your favorite paperbacks because of your affected hand.
With these little wooden book holders, you can hold your book open with one hand. Then, the only ‘therapy’ you’ll have is turning the pages. Which isn’t too bad 😉
According to reviews of a similar (lesser quality) product on Amazon, though, it only works well with thin books.
If you have thicker books that you want to read, then a weighted bookmark could be the key.
4. To Get Your Shoes Off
Getting shoes ON is a struggle within itself. Getting them OFF doesn’t have to be.
With this shoe remover, you can get your shoes off without the struggle.
5. To Zip Pants Up and Help Them Stay
Zippers are one of those things that were not invented with disability in mind.
Sure, switching to velcro can help – but not everything comes in velcro.
To help make zippers easier, try adding a simple keyring to the zipper. It will give you leverage for zipping up; and it can hook to your pant button to help stay up!
Here’s what a user from Reddit did:
A Word of Warning for All of This
Tools like these are a blessing during difficult times like stroke recovery. They can save you time, frustration, and headache.
But remember to constantly ask yourself, “Do I have to use this tool? Or can I try going without?”
Because using tools to make life easier can become a trap that you get stuck in.
It starts off by using a tool because it’s necessary, but then it becomes a tool because it’s convenient.
We recommend reading this article on compensation techniques vs convenient techniques to make sure that you stay on track to your best recovery.
Finally, A Tool to Ditch All Tools
We couldn’t write an article about stroke rehab tools without mentioning our own tool, MusicGlove hand therapy.
Unlike the previous shortcuts, which are all compensation techniques, MusicGlove is a way to get your hand back permanently.
Because tools are cool, but you don’t want to be using them forever – and MusicGlove can help with that.