There are many causes of obesity, including genetic and metabolic disorders as well as conditions that limit a person’s ability to move. Regardless of the cause, obesity can lead to additional health issues and can present challenges for any family members providing ongoing care.
Those providing basic care to people with bariatric concerns need to be aware of associated conditions like diabetes, as well as the possibility for bed sores due to limited movement. If left in one position for too long, pressure sores can become infected. In addition, family caretakers need to understand the risks they face.
Fortunately, there are many resources available and a broad range of products available to make bariatric patients more comfortable and keep them and their caretakers safe.
Easier Home Life
Bariatric care involves more than a basic of understanding of moving and lifting. While those skills are important, modifications to the home environment may also be needed. For instance, widening doors, or installing appropriate showers and toilets can make it much easier for the bariatric patient to care for themselves while minimizing risk of falls.
In some instances, creating a safe home environment, may involve adding wheelchair ramps, support rails, or other stability aides. It’s also possible that choosing beds, chairs, and other furniture suitable for the needs of bariatric patients in mind can provide a more comfortable home life. In addition, there are practical tools to assist with many daily living tasks.
Bariatric Lifestyle Aides
A person who is substantially overweight can have difficulty doing many tasks others take for granted. To make things easier, there are many products available.
Getting in and out of the bath or shower can be uncomfortable and standing for a prolonged period can be tiring, increasing the likelihood of falling. To make bathing and showering safer for bariatric patients, products like bath seats, bath steps, shower chairs, and toilet surround rails designed specifically to handle the additional weight are suggested.
It’s quite common for obese people to also suffer from diabetes, which has its own set of risks and discomforts. Items like shock absorbing insoles for shoes and diabetic walkers to protect their feet and safety alarms to alert the patient of low blood sugar levels all increase independence.
Bending to put on shoes or socks can be nearly impossible for bariatric patients. To assist with this, sock and stocking aides, long shoehorns, sponges with extra long handles, and other tools are available.
Many bariatric patients also have decreased mobility. This can lead to painful pressure sores, and possibly infection. Consider purchasing pressure-care cushions or mattresses to help prevent such issues.
Standing and Walking
Carrying additional weight is hard on feet, legs, and hips. Many bariatric patients will give up mobility because of this. Items like ankle and knee supports, bariatric wheelchairs, walking frames and rollators able to support their weight, and stair lifts can help them retain their independence.
Naturally, people want to retain their independence and dignity in the bathroom. Some of the most popular devices for doing this include toilet support rails, bariatric commodes, bath seats, specialized toilet seats, and hoists capable of supporting their weight.
The key to any bariatric mobility aides is to be aware of the manufacturer recommended weight limits and only purchase and install those which are appropriate for your family member. In doing this, they can retain much of their independence in a safe manner.