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Old 11-28-2010, 08:47 PM   #1
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Need gift ideas for Stroke patient

My DMIL had a stroke and can't use her right side much, I am trying to think of gifts that will be helpful. I have thought of the "clapper lamp" thing and a cup that you can't spill for hot or cold beverage. She would like a magnifying glass to help read the paper, would you get a big one like an 8X10 or a hand held round one. She is pretty much bed ridden and has help from DFIL and an aide comes an the am. Any suggestions would be appreciated!! I am going to put together a basket with tylenol band aids lotion etc and gift cards to grocery, she doesn't have any hobbies and does not read magazines. Really looking for things to help with handicap. Thanks!
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:04 PM   #2
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After my Uncle's stroke my cousin brought him some dry shampoo spray. It was great for between shampoos, which was hard for him to do.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:07 PM   #3
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I think the round glass, if she can slide it easy enough over the newspaper or the like....or what about the type that crafters use, it's on astand and you hold what you are working on underneath it? This may sound odd, but what about something along the lines of the Nintendo DS systemms...where you can use a stylus pen and play brain games etc? They have games for all ages. Does she like puzzles or word search etc? You coulsd tear the pages out of books you buy so they lay flat, easier for her to work on. How about books on tape? The no hobby thing is hard, maybe she woud become interested in something new like the internet/blogging etc...or does she have a DVD player for favorite movies or the dvd's that show the ocean/space/ travels etc. Do they have a pet? Maybe a new pillow for her bed if they have a pet they allow up to her. An item my mom uses a lot is the squishie pillows (bed, bath and beyond has them) they are lightweight so even weak strength can move it to where they want, and they conform to the body well and they are small so easier to fit into tighter spaces. being bed ridden can leave one prone to bed sores, ask her aide if there is anything out there to relieve pressure. I know there are mattresses but that gets invovled and certainly would need medical approval. Does she like to have her hair done? Maybe there is a beautician who would come to the house, I bet that woudl perk her up. I will keep thinking, and how nice of you to try amd get useful items.

I would alos post of on the DISabilities board, lots of great folks over there!
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Last edited by FINFAN; 11-28-2010 at 09:25 PM.
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:18 PM   #4
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Hi There!

Does she have a physical therapist? They might could suggest some adaptive appliances (like the cup you were talking about) that would be in line with her current abilities.

This is a website that has several options for the magnifier - haven't used the company but it might give you an idea of what's out there. http://www.lifesolutionsplus.com/magnifiers-c-33.html

And lastly, The American Stroke Association - http://www.strokeassociation.org/STR...ubHomePage.jsp
is a wonderful organization. There are 1-800 numbers at the bottom of the page that will put you in touch with volunteers that are either caregivers or survivors and I'm sure they could give you great ideas.

My husband is a 15 year survivor (had a massive one the day after his 45th birthday). He has made a remarkable recovery, but I relied on lots of good advice from others who had been there before.

Happy Holidays!
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:24 PM   #5
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Not sure how much you want to spend...a Kindle/Nook would be GREAT, she can hold it with one hand and you can make the letters HUGE to read
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Old 11-28-2010, 09:28 PM   #6
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How about books on tape?

You might want to consider a site like this - http://www.allegromedical.com/browse...brandKey=15772

My husband had a stroke almost 30 years ago when he was 27 from a car accident. He's been running 5Ks, half marathons and marathons for the past 15 years.
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Last edited by Deb & Bill; 11-28-2010 at 09:33 PM.
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Old 11-28-2010, 10:48 PM   #7
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Well, I'm not sure how "gifty" this is, but for my mom, I bought her some tops and pjs and turned them into clothes that open/close using velcro rather than snaps or buttons. It made it easier for her to be dressed in the morning and get into pjs at night. Hopefully they now have clothing that already comes this way, so you don't have to go through all that sewing like I did back in the 90s. Hmmm... I just ooked online and found a place called Buck & Buck.

I agree with the poster above that suggested books on tape.

My thoughts go out to you and your family. It's a very difficult time for all.
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Old 11-28-2010, 11:29 PM   #8
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My MIL had a series of strokes a few years back...it sounds like my MIL was a little more mobile...but she still couldn't walk on her own.
This is what we got her

small weights for the physical therapy

sweats.... sweat pants, and wide neck sweatshirts

a new robe that I attached velcro to instead of a tie wrap

a few towels that I attached velcro to so that when she got done her 'shower' she was able to cover herself (that really seemed to help her self esteem)

warm socks with the grippy bottoms

shoe like slippers (the rubber bottoms gave her better traction...and she didn't have to tie shoes)

That's all I can think of right now...I'm sure I'll remember more.

Oh wait....a cheap CD/tape player...so we could get her audio books to listen to from the library

~Walker 2010 ~ ~Crew 2011~ walking with my daughter in 2012
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Old 11-28-2010, 11:40 PM   #9
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upgrade their cable.
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Old 11-29-2010, 12:07 AM   #10
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How long ago did she have the stroke? Have her doctors and therapists stated that she will make no further improvement? After my mom's stroke she had little use of her right side at first but with therapy at a rehabillitation facility she was able to recover to where she only drags that foot a little now. At first I was told that she would be lucky to improve at all, but within three months she had recovered physically almost to the point at which she had the stroke. So if it has only been weeks since your DMIL's stroke, you or physical or occupational therapists may be able to work with her and restore additional function.

Some ideas for gifts would be large Dr. Grip pens, books of simple word searches, and more time with you and other family members.
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Old 11-29-2010, 12:17 AM   #11
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If she has an occupational therapist, ask them for ideas, too.

After my mom had her brain surgery last December, she would ignore her right side. I cannot tell you how many times she would get distracted and drop her arm onto her dinner tray which necessitated changing her gown and usually her bedding as well. (And when we got on the rehab floor at the hospital, most of that work is on the person who will be the caregiver, otherwise they just sit there until someone can get to them.)

Anyway -

They had a storage container filled with rice with different sized and textured items were hidden in. The idea was that the patient would get used to the feel of the rice and digging through it was the next step up.

They had putty with large pony beads stuck in it. Different putties provided more resistance, but the idea here was to work the putty and pick out the beads.

The real trick is to find out what she needs to work on and then to match that with her interests. For my mom, to work on her neglect, I would have everyone put things for her in the spots she ignored. It made her get used to looking for things and made her concentrate on using her "bad arm" (as she put it) instead of "cheating" and doing things the easy way.
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Old 11-29-2010, 12:21 AM   #12
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How about a digital picture frame? She can look at photos all she wants without having to hold/shuffle the pics. I know my inlaws love theirs.
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:38 AM   #13
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Thank you so much for the suggestions!!! We tried (begged) my DMIL and DFIL to come live with us after she had the stroke. When we built our house we actually set up an "apartment" in our basement that was designed with a wheelchair bound person in mind, my brother was in a wheelchair and we realized the door frames etc are not wide enough and the bathrooms are difficult if not big enough for a wheel chair. They will not come live with us and we live 2 1/2 hours aways. I wonder if the newspapers can be downloaded onto a kindle? That would be great! I love all the advice and suggestions!
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Old 11-29-2010, 08:50 AM   #14
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My heart goes out to you and your DH. My mom was about two hours away while in rehab. That was rough. I would drive there and back in the same day. Now she's a few minutes away.

Being able to keep a patient in familar surroundings is always good, though, as it is good for your FIL to be able to get out and spend some time in his neighborhood. Hopefully their friends and neighbors will visit. Does your DH have other siblings who will help out?

It's great that an aide is already scheduled. Hopefully your FIL will get out of the house when someone else is with your MIL. As the primary caregiver he needs to take good care of himself.

You might also look into additional household help such as a cleaning person once a week or the like.
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