One of the things that many older adults struggle with is cooking. Some health conditions can make it hard to do many of the things involved in preparing a meal, like chopping vegetables and opening cans. Because cooking involves using sharp knives, heat, and slippery liquids, it could even be hazardous for someone who is weak, frail, or who has dementia. However, there are several kitchen gadgets available that can make cooking easier and safer. Below are some kitchen gadgets that may help your aging relative.
Knob turners are hand-held tools that help turn everything from microwave knobs to dials on the dishwasher or stove, though they are not designed for doorknobs. The tool comes with a strap that goes around the wrist to prevent it from being dropped. They have rubber “fingers” that grip knobs to make turning them easy.
Jar Opening Pad
Half the problem of opening tightly closed jars is getting a good grip on the lid. A jar opening pad is rubbery and helps weakened hands to grasp and turn the lid.
Grasping the thin handle of a traditional vegetable peeler may be hard for arthritic hands. A palm peeler is a square plastic tool that fits in the palm of the senior’s hand. It has a ring that slips over the middle finger to keep it in place. There’s no need to bend fingers at all.
Cut Resistant Gloves
These gloves are made of a material that protects elderly hands from being nicked or cut when your aging relative is cutting vegetables. They come in multiple sizes, so they fit snugly to make manipulating tools and vegetables less clumsy.
Oven Rack Guards
It can be difficult for older adults with poor manual dexterity or arm strength to avoid bumping their arms against hot oven racks while putting food in the oven or taking it out. Rack guards slip over the front edges of the rack. They’re made of a soft material that does not get hot, so arms are safe from burns.
Even with a drawer full of kitchen gadgets, cooking may still be too difficult for your aging relative. Home care providers can ensure that your family member continues to eat well even when they cannot cook for themselves. A home care provider can assist with planning healthy meals and shopping for the ingredients. A home care provider can also prepare the meals, even making some that can be frozen and heated up later.