Aging comes with many ups and downs. On the one hand, you’ve gained decades worth of experience, wisdom, and memories. But on the other hand, you may find that many things that you used to do without a second thought are becoming increasingly challenging.
Many health conditions associated with aging cause challenges in certain areas of self-care, including getting dressed. If this is true of you or someone you love, take comfort in knowing that you’re not alone. In fact, the challenges associated with dressing have led to an entire category of clothing known as adaptive clothing.
Adaptive clothing is designed to make getting dressed easier for seniors, those with physically limiting health conditions, and their caregivers. Whether you choose to shop specifically for adaptive clothing or not, here are a few tips to help you choose clothing that is easier on aging bodies.
Certain conditions, like arthritis or Parkinson’s disease, can make handling small objects like buttons difficult or painful. However, shirts that can be pulled over your head can also cause discomfort. The good news is you have other options.
Look for clothing that can be fastened with snaps or velcro. Some companies even make shirts with magnetic closures. In fact, many of these have the polished look of a polo or a button-up shirt without the inconvenience of having to fiddle with all of those tiny buttons.
Alternatives to Zippers
Most of the health conditions that make dealing with buttons inconvenient also affect your ability to easily grip and manipulate a zipper. Rather than choosing pants with zippers, you can probably find stylish and comfortable pants with an elastic waist or velcro closures.
Choose Sensible Shoes
If you have a health condition that affects the use of your fingers, tying shoes can also be difficult. If you struggle to maintain your balance, your choice of footwear is important. Bending over to put on your shoes can make you lose your balance.
If you are dealing with any of these challenges, choose shoes that slip on or that can be fastened with velcro. To minimize any risk of slipping or falling, make sure that they fit well, have adequate arch support, and that they have non-slip bottoms. Orthopedic shoes are a great choice, especially if your feet cause you any discomfort.
Clothing For Wheelchair Users
If you have limited mobility, many items of clothing can be uncomfortable and can even contribute to sores. Clothing with flat seams can help you to avoid this problem. Many enjoy wearing pants with higher waistbands to avoid having them slip down. In addition, clothing that fully opens in the back may be easier to slip on and off.
Tools to Make Dressing Easier
If you’re having difficulty with buttons, you don’t necessarily have to get rid of all of your old button-up shirts. There are tools available with easy-to-grip handles that will hook a button and pull it through your button hole for you. These tools can also help you hook a zipper pull.
A long-handled shoe horn can help you to slip into your shoes without having to bend over to pull them on.
Where to Find Clothing That is Easy on Senior Bodies
A number of retailers specialize in affordable, stylish clothing that caters to the needs of seniors with various health conditions.
- Target. Their Universal Thread line features women’s jeans with flattened seams, higher-rise backs, and soft fabric.
- Zappos. Zappos Adaptive is a full line of fashionable adaptive clothing, organized on its site by specific health needs.
- Buck and Buck. This retailer offers a full line of men’s and women’s adaptive clothing. Shop online at their website or request a copy of their catalog.
- Silvert’s. The Silvert’s website offers extensive options in adaptive clothing. Their website is organized by need and condition. This will make it easy to find the best clothing for you.
- MagnaReady. MagnaReady’s stylish button-down shirts, polos, twill pants, and khakis all feature washing-machine safe magnetic closures.
With all of these options, you can find comfortable and stylish clothing that you enjoy wearing.
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