Whether it’s an issue of mobility or a difficulty using buttons and zippers, a common challenge for many seniors and people with disabilities is dressing. While caregivers can offer to make the process easier, many people prefer to perform this private task by themselves. What can people do to help make clothing themselves as simple as possible? A new type of apparel called adaptive clothing aims to make the process of dressing easier than it’s even been.
What is Adaptive Clothing?
Adaptive clothing takes traditional wardrobes and modifies the closures to enable easy dressing. Where buttons and zippers usually hold together shirts and pants, Velcro and elastic waists make adaptive clothing simple to close. These closures are designed to allow for caregivers to easily slip on a garment or to access it from the rear. Flat seams are also typically used in adaptive clothing to reduce friction, as well as roomier, more free-flowing designs to accommodate incontinence aids.
Additionally, adaptive clothing makes dressing and disrobing easier than ever for people who are sitting or lying down. With fastens that can be accessed from the front, side and rear, individuals that can’t get up or are unable to lift their arms or legs can be dressed easily. For people that have issues putting on footwear, adjustable sizes and non-restrictive closures make traditional laced shoes a thing of the past. Other adaptive clothing designs are tailored specifically for people in wheelchairs, featuring adjustable sleeves and a shorter back that reaches to the back of the seat.
It’s clear to see that adaptive clothing can help people with limited mobility and other physical disabilities, but this new type of clothing can make life easier for millions of people struggling with a number of different illnesses. Adaptive clothing can aid people of all ages suffering from Arthritis, Alzheimer’s Disease, Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s Disease, stroke or brain injury.
While some stores sell adaptive clothing, this relatively new type of apparel is still difficult to find at most retail stores. With such a wide range of usability that benefits millions of people suffering from a large number of diseases and illnesses, look for adaptive clothing to be used more frequently by caregivers in the near future.