Unusual gifts that make living easier
MELROSE PARK, Ill. â For those living with chronic conditions, the best holiday gift is something that will make navigating the daily routine easier. âSweaters, pajamas, candy and perfume are all very nice, traditional and thoughtful gifts for the compromised, but if you want to really show them you are concerned about their well-being, check out your local pharmacy for gifts theyâll use every day,â said Debbie Jansky, assistant nurse manager, Home Health Services, at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, part of the Loyola University Health System. Jansky and her team of 35 registered nurses, therapists, social workers and home health aides make about 1,600 home visits each month to those who have a need for skilled nursing or physical therapy in their home. âItâs very sad to see patients receive gifts of expensive perfume or cardigans that they will never enjoy because they canât open the bottle or unbutton the buttons,â Jansky said.
âThese are the items I recommend regularly, and are used and appreciated every day,â she said. A rethink on holiday gifts: â¢ Medication Organizers - $1.50 - $10. Help Grandma keep track of her pills. Available in all sizes (daily, weekly) and shapes, these tools will give the whole family peace of mind that the right pill is being taken at the right time.
â¢ Pill Cutter-$3. Many pills and tablets need to be halved or quartered. These handy devices offer precise cutting with minimal effort. â¢ Pill Punch - $8. âMany medications come in a multipunch card that those with arthritis have trouble manipulating,â said Clark Chrisman, a Gottlieb pharmacist. âThe pill punch easily pushes the individual pill through the sealed packaging.â â¢ ID Bracelet â $7 and up. A simple piece of jewelry alerts paramedics, nurses and doctors to important medical information, such as allergies to penicillin, congestive heart failure or diabetes. â¢ Item Grabber - $28. A sturdy clawlike hand tool that can be used to retrieve the box of crackers from the top shelf or a slipper that got kicked too far under the couch. â¢ Adjustable cane - $27. These canes compress to a 5-inch-long stick, much like a collapsible umbrella. Discreetly placed in a purse or coat pocket, it can quickly and easily be assembled to provide support when they need it most. â¢ Medicool - $45. Keep insulin or other medications cool and organized for easy application. â¢ Rollator - $160. A luxurious walker with high-quality wheels and brakes, with a basket for shopping and a handy bench to stop and rest.
â¢ Accessible bathroom aids â $27 - $100. Handheld water sprayers, toilet seat benches and bathtub safety rails may look insignificant in their box but install them in the bathroom, and you have created a safe haven that will be used often.