When you have rheumatoid arthritis, everyday activities can be painful and difficult. While there is no cure for arthritis, there are ways you can make life a little easier by modifying your home. Check out these seven home modifications that can make living with rheumatoid arthritis a little less painful.
Get a Walk-in Tub
If you have rheumatoid arthritis in your knees, stepping into the bathtub can be painful. Walk-in tubs have doors, so you can enter without bending your knees. They also come with built-in seats, so you can relax while you soak, allowing the warm water to soothe your joints. If you can't afford to get a new tub, make sure to install non-slip mats and safety railings to prevent slips and falls.
A site like http://www.twincitystairlifts.com can offer you more information on walk-in tubs.
Replace Doorknobs with Levers
For people without arthritis in their hands, turning a doorknob is a simple flick of the wrist. However, for people with arthritis, the pain makes it a difficult task. Lever-like doorknobs allow you to easily open doors just by pushing down, preventing the need to grasp the knob.
Get Better Chairs
Standing from a seated position takes a lot of effort. Most people stand by positioning their feet under the chair and pushing themselves upward with their thigh muscles. If you have arthritis, you may not be able to bend your knees enough to get your feet under the chair, which makes your thigh muscles work harder. There are a few ways to help. First, choose seats that are tall and keep your knees parallel or higher than your hips. Also, choose chairs with strong armrests, so you can use them to push yourself upward.
Make Your Toilet Taller
It isn't just your couch and chairs that should be taller. Having a taller toilet also makes it easier to rise. Luckily, you don't have to run out and buy a new toilet. You can just purchase a raised toilet seat. Raised toilet seats add the extra height you need to make it easier to stand. Some also come with handles, which you can use for extra support.
Keep Frequently-Used Items Close
If you use an item frequently, keep it close. For example, in your kitchen, if you frequently use the same coffee mug, don't store it in the back of a tall cabinet with the rest. Keep it within reach, so you don't have to strain to reach it.
Eliminate Tripping Hazards
If your rheumatoid arthritis makes it difficult to walk, you are more likely to trip, so get rid of any tripping hazard, such as rugs. If you have a lot of clutter, making it difficult to navigate through your home, get rid of it, so you have more space to move. Last, make sure you have plenty of light, so you can spot tripping hazards before you fall.
Get Touch Lamps
Speaking of lights, some lamps can be difficult to turn on and off. Lamps with small switches that must be twisted can be an impossible challenge for people with arthritis. Touch lamps are a great solution because you don't have to grasp anything. Simply touch the lamp with your hand, and it turns on or off. If the toggle switches for overhead lights are giving you trouble, switch to rocker light switch plates.
Living with rheumatoid arthritis can be a struggle, but you can make it easier with simple, small changes to your home. While they won't cure your arthritis, they can make everyday life a little less complicated. If you would like to make changes to your home, get started today by identifying areas of your home that cause you pain.