Happy 131st Birthday FDR!

How does a great leader approach a serious mobility issue? To find out, I took a look at one of the most famous disabled of all time: Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR contracted polio the same year I was born. Until my research, I never realized his circumstances shared many similarities with my own. Of course, I most likely will never be presidential material and I wasn't fully diagnosed with multiple sclerosis until I was 73. FDR, on the other hand, was paralyzed at 39 while campaigning for the office.  But the actual details, many evident in the new movie Hyde Park on the Hudson, were largely unpublicized. FDR was paralyzed from the waist down. Though I am not paralyzed myself, we both have the similar bowel and urinary issues, [...]

How to Self-Fund Your Mobility Independence

Mobility issues in 2013 may take some dramatic turns as future needs and declining federal monies collide with baby boomers’ increasing frailty and the obesity epidemic. The demands for broader insurance coverage, changing technology and inordinate spending for institutionalized care may make self-funding solutions a more and more necessary option. Government safety nets work for now, but we may not always be able to rely on them. It never hurts to have a backup plan. I have spent a lot of time price-shopping for mobility scooters and honestly it is not as bad as you might have been led to think to aid your own mobility when it becomes evident your independence is being challenged. You can start by setting aside a $5 bill once [...]

Getting the Most of Disabled Helping Disabled

So, you are riding a mobility scooter and life seems pretty good even, though you do face a few limitations that sometimes make you feel like a second class citizen. You are at peace with your life, why stir up the pot with a trip to an Independent Living Center? The basic idea behind the independent living concept is that the disabled, regardless of the manner, have a similar background and a shared struggle that can be abetted by banding together, at least on some issues. The idea that disabled people are the best experts in dealing with their own needs is a valuable concept. I recently saw a report on an ILC in the southwest that helped a gentleman who lost his voice due to cancer. It wasn't too difficult to find an augmentative [...]

Nutrition for the Elderly

This guest post was contributed by Forest Healthcare; specialist in care homes, nursing homes and residential homes for the elderly. Whether we like it or not, people start aging from the day that they are born. The good news is we are constantly being told that people are living longer. It is predicted that soon 23% of the population will be over 65 and 10% of these people will be over 75! So faced with the inevitable, what can we do to help ourselves and hopefully prevent some of the effects that aging has on the body? The World Health Organization had to come up with a classification of age so decided that people aged between 45 and 59 are middle aged, you are elderly between the ages of 60 and 74 and when you turn 75 you are just [...]

Let’s Get Positive!

Depression can creep up on you like a silent rainstorm brewing. The seasonal changes can also play a big part. When you leave for work in the darkness and return in darkness, life seems a little… gloomy, quite frankly! Let’s fight those dreary, sad feelings with some mood lifting techniques.  I tried to find some strategies other than the usual “get your eight hours of sleep”.  Medications can help, but they are not cheap and may cause side effects. How do you disengage yourself from those lackluster feelings? Getting outside can be a chore sometimes, but it can tremendously elevate your mood. How-to-fight-depression.com emphasized this important concept on their website. You will reap the benefits, whether you are sitting outside [...]

5 Tasty Low Carb Recipes

January is the time that people begin to watch what they eat and recover from the heavy meals of the holidays. Try eating a low carb diet and pairing it with an active lifestyle as it can really help you shed some pounds.  Here are some of my favorite recipes that I've found across the web. Side Dish: “Better than Potatoes” Cheesy Cauliflower Puree This recipe substitutes cauliflower for the potatoes to make for a low carbohydrate mashed “potatoes” recipe. The smart substitution makes the side contain only 148 calories and 4 grams of net carbs. Check out the recipe here. Appetizer/Entrée: Slow Cooked Chili Mac This slow-cooked pasta favorite takes about 5 hours to make, but it tastes incredible and packs about 18 carbs in [...]

Eye-Tracking Technology to Keep an Eye on

Assistive technologies are making daily mundane tasks that many take for granted a whole lot easier for the disabled and mobility-challenged. The overall goal for researchers that work on these technologies is to help the client achieve more independence. Imagine trying to use a computer without the use of your arms and hands. How would you control the mouse and keyboard? That's the problem that Tobii Rex and eyeCan are currently trying to fix. Tobii Rex With the Tobii Rex, you can control the cursor using just your eyes. Currently, the user must click a button on the keyboard in order for the device to “click” what you’re looking at; however, the technology is still quite impressive, and I’m sure accessibility can only get [...]

Charging Stations and Traffic Rules Proposed in Macon

Macon-Bibb County in Georgia, the country’s first “Age-Friendly Community” according to the AARP and the WHO, has proposed new legislation to help motorized wheelchair and mobility scooter users navigate city streets. In this article by Jim Gaines of Macon.com, he writes that City Councilman Frank Tompkins isn't taking the AARP title for granted; as a strong advocate for the disabled, he is asking for four charging stations for mobility aids in high traffic areas of downtown Macon. This will allow for electric wheelchair and mobility scooter users to make a brief pit stop to recharge before setting back out in the city. Gaines is also proposing some laws to help keep scooter and wheelchair users safe on the streets of Macon. Traffic [...]

How To Clean and Disinfect Your Mobility Scooter

So I was on the way back from the gym, using a shortcut on my mobility scooter that took me through an unused parking lot. Before I realized what I was dealing with, I’d run over a couple of cigar-shaped pieces of goose droppings. It brought to mind rubber gloves and cleaners. Not my favorite subject, but something I have to deal with on a regular basis now, especially with all the viruses associated with winter. So, how do you go about sanitizing a mobility scooter? How often do you need to do it, and how do you make sure it is germ-free? With all the time I spend on my scooter, the times I have ridden it to the dinner table to eat and the times I haven't quite made it to the bathroom, I never once gave it a thought about how [...]

Independent Living Centers

It’s been over a half century, but I remember when... Each individual living with a disability faced his or her own challenges largely on their own. They had unique problems and it was difficult to know where to turn for assistance or even advice. Independent Living Centers were created specifically to handle that issue. They exist in every state. If you have never visited one, you should consider it, especially if you have a disability. You may find the help you need in dealing with all sorts of issues. Whether the one closest to you is an ILC or a CIL (Center for Independent Living), you will find they are community based, cross-disability oriented and non-profit and they are operated by people who have their own disabilities. [...]