When illness, injury or age-related chronic conditions affect an individuals ability to dress themselves it can be frustrating and embarrassing. Many seniors must rely on family caregivers or elder care aides to help them with their clothing every morning. Although it may not seem like a big deal to the family member, doing as much as they can on their own is a key part of an elderly persons self-esteem and sense of independence. Thats why including dressing aides as part of the morning routine can give seniors a chance to dress on their own as much as possible.

Dressing aides are tools and accessories that help elderly and disabled people dress and undress themselves. With seniors, many lose muscle strength and grip strength over time, making it harder to maneuver the body for dressing. Some have lost the use of parts of their body, such as an arm from a stroke or their hands from arthritis. Elderly adults can also experience balance issues that make it hard to stand, pivot or bend over as needed. Dressing aides help the elderly adults complete some of the more challenging tasks associated with dressing themselves.

Here are just a few of the more common dressing aides that seniors can use to help themselves. Family caregivers and elder care aides can step in and assist in the areas where they are truly needed.

  • Dressing Stick: This is an all-purpose tool that is lightweight and durable. It is an easy to grip stick with a small hook on one end and a large hook on the other. It can be used to pick things up off the floor, putting on shirts and blouses, pulling up pants or skirts, and taking off socks.
  • Long Shoehorns: Its a device that is flattened on one end to fit into the heel of a shoe while the elderly person grips the other end. They slide their foot into the shoe and guide their heel inside. When their foot is in the shoe, they can pull out the shoehorn.
  • Button Closer and Zipper Pull: Sometimes seniors have a hard time with fine motor movements like zippers and buttons, but this device bridges the gap. Its a small stick with a loop on one end and a hook on the other. The loop inserts through the button hole and goes around the button. They pull it back through and complete the closure. The hook fits on the zipper hole, allowing the elderly adult to manipulate the zipper.
  • Sock Aide: This is a flexible plastic tube attached to handles. The elderly person places the sock around the opening and pulls it onto their foot using the handles. Similar device are made of wire and stand on the floor as the senior inserts their foot into the open sock.
  • Specialized Clothing: There are many different types of clothes and accessories on the market that are designed to help seniors and disabled adults with getting dressed. Examples include zipper rings, one handed belts, front closure bras, wheelchair pants and Velcro side pants.

When seniors can do most of the work themselves, its better for their overall health and well-being. Every small accomplishment is a victory and getting themselves dressed or mostly dressed is a wonderful achievement.



If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Woodbury, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.