The better medicine gets, the longer people live. This has been true since the beginning of humankind, but this increase in average lifespan has been particularly significant since the last century. In the early 1900s it was almost unheard of for anyone to make it past the age of 60. Today, the average lifespan is close to 80 years old, with women typically outliving men by a few years. And it’s likely this trend of increased longevity will continue. In fact, it’s estimated that by the year 2030, one fifth of the the U.S. population will consist of older people (partially thanks to the massive amount of Baby Boomers).
With more people living to be older, it’s necessary for there to be a proportionate amount of proper care for these people and their conditions. While some people can remain independent and relatively healthy even in older age, many people need some form of assistance in their later years. Some of them may need medical attention for serious conditions while others might simply need guidance and care to help them maintain their dignity and independence to the highest possible degree. This latter category of elder care is not to be undervalued or dismissed, as independence is important for most people, especially for those who feel it slipping away with age. Here are some examples of tools and products that can help seniors maintain their independence and dignity.
Mobility Devices for Seniors
Perhaps the most common and useful of these devices for daily activity are mobility aids for seniors, which include everything from canes for elderly people to motorized wheelchairs. The past eight years have seen about a 50% increase in the use of mobility devices, according to Medicare recipients. And by 2050 the demand for walking aids is expected to at least double, simply due to the rise of the number of elderly people.
These devices allow seniors with bone and muscle conditions to get around on their own with relative ease. Canes are still the most preferred of these aids, perhaps because of how simple they are compared to some other mobility devices. Canes can also be a stylish accessory, doubling as a fashionable addition to someone’s wardrobe. People can use standard canes or look into custom, artistically designed ones to make a statement.
Aside from canes, walkers and wheelchairs are also common mobility aids. For people with more severe conditions, the extra support of a walker might be necessary. And for those who can no longer walk, or who have difficulty walking for long periods of time, wheelchairs both manual and automated are another option.
Washable Mattress Protectors
Getting around day to day is important, but there’s more to independence and a dignified life than just that. Urinary incontinence becomes more likely the older we get. For those 65-69 years of age, incontinence is about a 14% likelihood. This percentage increases significantly to 45% once people get over the age of 85.
Because of how common incontinence is in older adults, products like washable mattress protectors and disposable bed pads can be extremely helpful. With tools such as these, seniors can keep their beds clean without the need to frequently notify someone of an accident, etc. Washable mattress protectors save time and money this way, while also allowing people to maintain their independence and dignity.
If incontinence is a frequent issue, adult diapers and similar products can be helpful. With these, people don’t have to worry about finding a restroom on short notice, nor do they have to stifle their independence. Adult diapers allow people the freedom to get around as much as they want to on their own time.
No matter your age, it’s likely you want some level of independence and freedom. Maintaining these things can be difficult the older we get, but it’s entirely possible. With walking aids and incontinence products like washable mattress protectors and adult diapers, elderly people can remain independent for a long time to come.