Multiple Sclerosis: Assistive Devices

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Multiple Sclerosis: Assistive Devices

Topic Overview

Assistive devices are tools that help you hold objects, open and close doors, transfer weight while shifting positions, or walk. They assist you by making certain daily activities easier to perform if you have any degree of physical disability related to multiple sclerosis (MS).

Assistive devices can help you with daily activities such as bathing, grooming, dressing, walking or otherwise being mobile, writing, or eating. These devices can be simple, such as special hooks to help you button a shirt, or elaborate, such as an electric wheelchair or a computer that can be controlled by a mouth switch if you are unable to use your limbs.

Examples of assistive devices used by people with MS include:

  • Bathing tools, such as tub or shower grab bars to help you get in and out of the bathtub.
  • Grooming and dressing tools, such as button or zipper hooks to help you button and unbutton your clothes, electric toothbrushes, and combs and brushes with bigger and easier-to-grab handles.
  • Writing and reading tools, such as grips on pens or a magnifying glass to correct certain visual problems resulting from MS.
  • Movement devices, such as canes, braces, walkers, or even electric scooters. Wheelchairs can also keep you mobile if you are no longer able to walk.
  • Special lifts that can be attached to help you get in and out of your bed, automobile, or even your bathtub.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Primary Medical Reviewer Adam Husney, MD, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Colin Chalk, MD, CM, FRCPC - Neurology
Last Revised April 15, 2010

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