5 Ways to Support a Disabled Family Member

Disabled Family Member

Negosentro.com | Dealing with a disability, either physical or cognitive, is never easy – it’s an ongoing struggle that continues day after day, which is particularly true if you live with a disabled family member. However, there are a lot of great ways to support them and improve their quality of life, so check out the best five of them and get down to business right away!

Remember that not all disabilities are visible

Even though it’s quite obvious, we must emphasize once again that not all disabilities are visible, which makes them much more difficult to identify and deal with. For example, a wheelchair is a sign that a person doesn’t have full use of their legs, whereas a white cane and a guide dog indicate visual impairments. However, a child who has autism and struggles with sensory issues often seems like a toddler having a bad day or a spoiled brat, which is exactly where the potential problem may occur. However, the fact that some disabilities are invisible doesn’t make them less real. They still make life difficult, and the earlier you understand that, the better. 

Speak clearly and directly and listen well

If your family member has a developmental disability or any other cognitive issue, you must do your best to speak as clearly and directly as possible in the first place. Clear sentences and simple words are highly likely to result in successful communication, as well as paying attention to their vocabulary and pace of speech, so take all these factors into consideration and you won’t go wrong. Besides that, it’s important to let people with speech impairments finish their own sentences. Be patient, don’t interrupt them or talk for them, and you’ll do a great job. On the other hand, if your family member is in a wheelchair, be sure to sit down when talking with them so that they don’t have to strain their neck to look up at you. 

Be aware of their personal space

This is particularly important for people who use a mobility aid such as a cane, a walker, and a wheelchair, simply because these are a part of their personal space. Needless to say, you need to be aware of it at any moment, which is crucial for a number of important reasons – with their safety in the first place. Disturbing your disabled family member’s routine is the last thing you should do, which is why you mustn’t touch, move, or lean on their mobility aids. Apart from that, you should never start to push their wheelchair without their permission, so bear that in mind as well. A large number of disabled people become quite independent in that area over time, which means that they probably don’t need your help with the wheelchair.  

Don’t be afraid to accept help

No one says that supporting a disabled family member will be a piece of cake – on the contrary, it can take a lot of effort, patience, and nerves. Well, that’s why you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help whenever you need it. There are different kinds of therapy everywhere in the world that can help disabled men and women improve the quality of their life, and that’s the case with the suburbs of Sydney, Australia. For example, occupational therapy in Liverpool is a great choice for people who need help with self-care activities such as showering or dressing. Aside from that, occupational therapists also assist their clients to access the community, prescribe assistive technologies, and explore appropriate housing options, which is a fantastic choice for people who want to maximize their independence on a daily basis. If that’s what you’re looking for to help a disabled family member, you certainly won’t make a mistake.

Adjust your home to meet their needs

Last but not least, supporting a disabled family member by adjusting your home to meet their needs is exactly what should be done in order for them to feel as independent as possible while moving around. For example, older people find the grab bars extremely handy, so position a few of them strategically around the house and encourage your elderly to move with ease. Apart from that, a commode chair with adjustable height next to their bed can make it much easier for them – especially when you know that trips to the bathroom can be potentially dangerous for the older men and women. On the other one, paraplegics will need a lift for the tub and a special tool for reaching and grabbing things they dropped. Trust us when we say that these will make a huge difference, so take them into consideration and improve your loved one’s life as soon as possible. 

As you can tell, there are a lot of great ways to support a disabled family member and understand what they’re going through every single day. So, if that’s your ultimate goal, all you need to do is to stick to our tips and you’ll make it happen, without a shadow of a doubt!