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Parkinson's disease: Easing everyday challenges

Household adjustments can help people with Parkinson's disease.

Many of the challenges of Parkinson's disease crop up in simple, day-to-day tasks. The American Parkinson Disease Association offers these tips for making life around the house simpler and safer.

In the bathroom:

  • Buy a shower chair or tub bench.
  • Put a nonslip mat or strips on the shower floor.
  • Install grab bars.
  • Use soap on a rope with a long-handled bath brush or a terry cloth mitt for bathing.
  • Switch to an electric razor.

In the clothes closet:

  • Lower the clothes rods in your closets.
  • Buy clothing that closes in the front with simple fasteners.
  • Replace buttons and zippers with Velcro strips or dots.
  • Sew firm elastic bands into shirt cuffs so they don't need to be buttoned.
  • Put on and take off clothes from your stiffer side first.
  • Get a dressing stick, which helps pull pants and shorts over feet and legs.
  • Switch to elastic shoelaces.

In the kitchen:

  • Arrange your kitchen to make cooking easier—store pots next to the stove, for example.
  • Buy a cutting board with raised sides.
  • Sit down while you prepare food.
  • Try a rocking knife and silverware with built-up handles to make eating easier.
  • Place a rubber pad or wet dishcloth under bowls and pans during food preparation.
  • Move food from kitchen to table on a cart with wheels.
  • Use a lazy Susan on the table or counters.
  • Add a plate guard, a rim that attaches to one side of your plate, or use scoop dishes with raised edges.
  • Try plastic straws or lightweight mugs with large handles for easier drinking.

Reviewed 1/5/2022

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