Showing posts with label products for the disabled. Show all posts
Showing posts with label products for the disabled. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber

Sometimes People Need Some Helping in Reaching Things

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
My husband is picking up a container of foot powder he dropped.
That's why our house has always had a reacher in almost every room for the past twenty years. We inherited a few from my in-laws, who had used them after hip surgery. My husband purchased more of them when he had his own hip surgery. I never thought I'd need another one until we inherited a second home from my mom and we started to live there for months at a time. It only had two reachers and my husband claimed both. When my knees started to make bending over hard to do, I decided I needed one I could lay claim to. I had an old one in my room,  but discovered it did not work well. My husband's did, so I decided to search Amazon to find one just like his. Since  all reacher-grabbers do not work equally well, I decided I should review the Handi-Reacher 50-1140 because I know it works well. I'd hate to see people who need the help get a reacher like my old one that doesn't work.

Why the Handi-Reacher is the Best Reacher-Grabber

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
Handi-Reacher Picking up Pill
The Handi-Reacher will pick up anything solid that is three inches wide or smaller. It will pick up a can of soup on a kitchen shelf above your head or grab the edge of a pan or casserole dish at the back of a bottom cupboard. My husband uses it to pick up the newspaper - even when the delivery person has thrown it under a car.You only have to pull the trigger handle with your hand to grab the item and bring it up or down. In my opinion it is the best reacher for disabled people.

At the end of the grabber claw is a small magnet that helps attract metal screws, tacks, nails, and other small metal objects so you can pick them up easily. The lower part of the claw also has grooves on the surface to keep objects from slipping. In the photo above Hubby is picking up a small pill he dropped on the floor. Below is photo of this action from a different angle. Do you see the little knob at the top of the reacher? That is to aid in dressing. I haven't used that yet because I've not yet needed it.

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
Handi-Reacher Grasping Pill

Don't Get a Reacher Like My Old One

I know there are some cheaper reachers available, and one of them may suit you better than the Handi-Reacher. I knew my husband's worked and I kept looking until I found it. I hadn't tested the other ones. I can tell you which one not to get, though. Don't get one that looks like my old one pictured below.

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
Old Reacher that Doesn't Work

After a while, it just stopped working. See that space at the end of the
Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
Old Reacher's Bent Handle
jaw? I can no longer squeeze it shut. The flimsy handle is bent out of shape (see right) and won't work anymore. The shape of the handle also makes it harder to squeeze than the trigger handle on my Handi-Reacher. The whole-hand trigger handle is a must for those of us who have arthritis in our hands, since it easily pulls back instead of needing a hard squeeze.

Review of Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Reacher Grabber
Frozen Jaw of Old Reacher
Another major difference between this old reacher and the Handi-Reacher is the metal rod that connects the handle to the spring mechanism that opens and shuts the jaw. On the right of this photo you can see it hooked into the nearest point of the mechanism nearest the spring, which is hidden here by the hook.

In the Handi-Reacher, all of these parts that can bend and break so easily are protected by hard plastic or what appears to be a strong aluminum tube. Don't buy anything with an exposed wire and parts like you see in my photos of my old reacher. In this picture to the left you will also see that the inside of the old reacher's jaw is smooth instead of grooved like the Handi-Reacher. The groves help the object you are grabbing stay intact in the jaw until you can get it.

Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Handi-Reacher, Standard 24Handi-Reacher 50-1140 Handi-Reacher, Standard 24Check Price

This is kit is another option with high customer ratings for those of you who may need additional help after a hip replacement. It's especially designed to help you. It includes not only a reacher, but also aids for putting on socks and shoes, a long-handled bath sponge, and a dressing tool. Check it out before hip surgery. My husband still uses a long shoe horn and a sock tool when dressing, and it's been over ten years since his surgery.

Sammons Preston 49850 Complete Hip Replacement Kit, 24Sammons Preston 49850 Complete Hip Replacement Kit, 24Check Price

If your knees or back make it hard for you to bend to pick up objects, the Handi-Reacher or the Hip Replacement Recovery Kit may be just the friend you need. If you have trouble reaching a shelf above your head, you will also find these reaching tools useful. Why wait another day to get your Handi-Reacher to start making your life easier?

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Review of Angora Sport Wool Knee Warmers

Why I Wanted Knee Warmers

I recently injured my left knee to the extent that walking and sleeping were extremely painful. I found help during the night with my Cushy Cloud Knee Pillow, but walking during the day was excruciating. At times I thought my knee would collapse on me. This was especially true when it was very cold. Even though I was also wearing silk long underwear beneath my trousers, it really hurt to walk. I needed a solution.

Then I remembered knee warmers. I decided to search Amazon to see what might be right for me. I wanted to keep my knees warm, but I also hoped to support the functioning parts of my knee. I still have to wait for an appointment with an orthopedic specialist to be approved by my insurance, and I can't keep ice on the knee all day. (Yes, I know I want to keep it warm, but the Nurse Practitioner recommended ice packs off and on to help the circulation.)

What I Bought to Solve My Knee Problem

I model my knee warmers. © B. Radisavljevic
I model my knee warmers. © B. Radisavljevic
I saw a lot of knee warmers, but got sidetracked from Amazon and ordered my Angora knee warmers from a sponsored site, not having seen the link to them on Amazon itself at first. I especially wanted Angora because it is not only warm, but it's soft instead of scratchy on my skin. Now I see I could have ordered them straight from Amazon. Later I discovered some of the other choices might have been cheaper and served as well, and I am also showing you some of the other options I might try when I buy a second set of knee warmers.

I bought a size Medium. Although some reviewers on Amazon thought the sizes ran small, I found the size I ordered was right for me. I did measure before buying because I hate making returns. Some reviewers on the site I bought from mentioned having trouble getting refunds, which is another reason to purchase from Amazon. Those who buy from Amazon have better success with returns because Amazon wants to keep customers happy.

I don't want to return mine. They are helping me. They are just tight enough to lend support so that I can now walk with much less pain. Sometimes there is no pain at all unless I've been sitting for a long time. They do keep my knees nice and warm, and they don't scratch. I take them off at bedtime, since they aren't designed for sleeping. When I'm in bed my blankets and Cushy Cloud Pillow keep my knee warm.

Should You Buy These Knee Warmers?

I would recommend these knee warmers to people who suffer with knee pain when it's cold. Although my left knee pain is caused by more than arthritis, the pain in my right knee, which is the one the surgeon wants to operate on one of these days, is arthritic. It causes me no noticeable pain while I'm wearing my knee warmers. The knee warmers also lessen the pain in my injured left knee. 

I plan to buy another pair of knee warmers, because I'll need to wash these sometime. They are machine washable on delicate cycle at temperatures of 40C or 104 F. One should use a wool detergent and dry them in a hanging position. They  should not be put into the drier.

I will probably try the Florida Othopedics Therall Warming Knee Support next. Those are bought singly rather than in pairs. This brand gets better reviews than the ones I bought, but it really isn't much cheaper than the Medi ones if I buy a pair. They are made of a special elastic with warming ceramic fibers. 

What I discovered in my search was that all sorts of options and brands in a variety of fabrics are available and there is a knee warmer choice to help anyone with an arthritic knee. It's a matter of personal preference. My Medi knee warmers are just right for me, and they help alleviate my arthritic pain. You may prefer one of the other choices below after reading site reviews. If you are suffering, though, these knee warmers can help you.  Order some today while you are thinking about it. You won't be sorry.

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Shower Accessories I Depend Upon; A Review

Taking a Shower Is More Complicated Than It Used to Be

Having the right shower accessories makes it easier. I have always been a shower person rather than a bath person. Showering was a pretty simple matter most of my life. I'd get in the shower, soap up and rinse, dry myself, and get out. No big deal. Now that I'm 73 and not quite as limber as I used to be, taking a shower seems like a much bigger deal.

Invacare I-Fit Shower Chair with Back Support for Shower or Bath, Supports Up to 400 lbs.Invacare I-Fit Shower Chair with Back Support for Shower or Bath, Supports Up to 400 lbs.Check Price

To complicate my showers even more, we have to deal with water rationing here in California. We can't just let showers run while the water heats unless we want to pay higher water rates. When I get into the shower, I need to take a large container in with me to collect the cold water. When the water is warm, I can go about the business of getting clean.  

After soaping up and rinsing off, I normally shave my legs. When I do that, I need to put my legs up where I can reach them easily. For that I use my shower chair. At this point in my life I can still get my legs up, one at a time to shave them. 

After my shower, I also use the chair when I dry my legs. It's so much easier to reach my feet and legs when they are resting on the seat of my shower chair. The photo above is of the Invacare Shower Chair with Seat Back. It is very similar to the one I use. Mine is an Invacare, but they may not make the same model anymore. Mine is over twenty years old.

A Shower Chair is Even More Important After Surgeries Limit Movements

I have had several surgeries this past two years. First I had foot surgery and it was a few weeks before I could stand in the shower. It was really wonderful to have a place to sit. I use a hand-held shower head that can help me get wet where I need to while I'm sitting down. I'm also beginning to have knee problems that sometimes makes sitting to shower easier. One can still shave from the sitting position and wash hair while sitting down.

I could not get along well without a shower seat. But all shower seats are not created equal. The first one I ever got is still at home. It has no back and a plastic seat. It has chrome legs. After several years, the legs are not only rusty, but they are now also wobbly. I don't feel quite safe putting my legs up on it to shave anymore. It moves under me.

Since my last surgery, I live most of the time at a house I inherited from my mother. It has a much better shower chair - one with a back.  Both the seat and legs are much sturdier. It most closely resembles the Invacare Shower Chair with Seat Back above, except that part of the legs on mine are aluminum. When I need to sit, I can lean back and have support. The legs don't rust or wobble. Along the side edges are some slots that can hold hand-held shower fixtures. You can see it in my photo below. 

Things to Consider Before Buying Your Shower Seat

 Drive Medical RTL12505 Handicap Bathroom Bench with Back & ArmsCheck Price Carex Bath Seat And Shower Chair With Back For Seniors, Bath ChairCheck Price Essential Medical Supply Height Adjustable Shower and Bath BenchCheck Price Zadro 12-inch Wide Best Silicone Squeegee with Clear Ergonomic HandleCheck Price


Since my house came with this shower seat, I've never had to assemble it. Others have testified it is very easy to assemble. The leg lengths and seat height are easily adjustable. I'm not sure if the back of this one can be removed, but it can be removed from the Carex Universal Bath Bench pictured below, which is very similar in style. Both can hold up to 400 pounds.The size of the chair makes it able to fit into both stall and bathtub showers. I'm going to get one of these for our permanent residence before I fall someday leaning a leg on the backless seat I have there now. I have learned that you get what you pay for.

Before you buy a chair for your shower, decide if you want or need arms on it. I don't have arms on mine and have never missed them, but I do have a grab bar in the shower to assist me in getting up and down. If you are not disabled, you may not need arms or a back. But since the Carex Shower chair has a removable back, it can adjust to meet future needs. Be sure to measure your shower to make sure the chair will fit. I believe the Carex Universal Bath Bench is the most compact and will fit in almost all showers. 

Wiping the Shower Walls Eases Cleaning the Shower Later

When I finish my shower, I like to get the water off the doors and the shower sides, since the water here is very hard. I used to use a towel at the other house, but the shower is much bigger here and the towel is soaked before I finish. I dug out the old simple shower squeegee my mother-in-law used to have, but it was useless and put water back on the door as fast as it removed it. So I went to Amazon looking for a replacement.

My Invacare Shower Chair and Zadro Squeegee, © B. Radisavljevic
My Invacare Shower Chair. My Zadro Squeegee
is on top on the right.
I finally purchased the Zadro Fogless Ergonomic Squeegee and it has been very efficient in removing the water. The blade is a foot long and shaped so it can fit under the other door when the two shower doors that meet are closed. Since each door is two feet wide, I can easily clean half a door with one swipe. The blade meets the door surface snugly enough to remove most of the water. The few drops that drip back can easily be removed with a small rag or towel. The old plastic squeegee you see to the left of the seat in my photo threw almost as much water back on the door as it took off. My Zadro squeegee (right) also does a good job on the tile surfaces on the shower walls.

The only complaint I have is that I can't use the suction holder that is supposed to attach to the shower wall. It does not adhere well to tile. It would also be one more thing the squeegee would have to go around while I'm using it, since I also have the shower fixtures and the grab bar on the walls. That doesn't bother me since I can store the squeegee in one of the holes in the side of the shower seat. I usually use the long one designed as a handle and it works very well.

I am very thankful I have these two wonderful shower accessories to help me keep myself and my shower clean. They have made my life much easier. Maybe they would solve a problem for you or someone you love, too.  Why not get them today and make your life or another's easier?

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”

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