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A Little Assistive Technology Goes a Long Way

February 7, 2021

I recently had the pleasure of working with a woman from North Dakota in her early 70s who visited North Dakota Assistive to find some things to help her in her daily life. She had visited us several years ago and had thought that we might have something to help her. She had been struggling with some of her daily living tasks due to severe arthritis in her hands.

She scheduled a free demonstration with me at our Fargo office during which we explored a variety of assistive technology to help with some of the tasks that had become difficult or impossible for her to do because of her arthritis.

First we explored the kitchen area. A girl has got to eat!

Problem 1: Opening jars

Solution 1: A powered jar opener that can open even the tightest of pickle jars with the touch of a button!

Problem 2: Chopping fruits, veggies, nuts, etc. Due to her arthritis, she had difficulty keeping a cutting board in place while cutting with a knife and holding the thing to be chopped.

Solution 2: A cutting board that suctions to the counter to hold itself in place, has an attached, pivoting knife, and spikes to hold an onion, apple, etc. in place while chopping.

Combination Cutting Board from Performance Health

Problem 3: Due to her arthritis, she was unable to hold a standard steak knife at the correct angle while simultaneously applying enough pressure to cut meat, pizza, etc.

Solution 3: A rocking T knife that can be can be gripped between the middle and ring fingers.

Rocking T Knife

Problem 4: Her hands aren’t able to open wide enough to hold onto cups, tumblers, etc. without handles.

Solution 4: Add on handles that can be adjusted to fit a variety of differently sized cups, to-go mugs, bottled drinks, etc.

Yoelike Adjustable Anti-slip Adjustable Tumbler Handle

Next up: The bathroom.

Problem 5: Holding, opening, and dispensing from shampoo, conditioner, and body wash bottles.

Solution 5: A trio soap dispenser that adheres to the shower wall and dispenses the shampoo, etc. when she presses with her palm. No more having to try to hold onto slippery bottles!

Better Living Products Trio Soap Dispenser

Now that we had some solutions, our next step was to figure out how she could acquire these items. That’s where North Dakota Assistive’s Possibilities Grant came in. She applied for the Possibilities Grant and was awarded funding for these small but much-needed items. She recently sent me a letter to let me know how things are going.

Thank you so much for all your help so I could receive these items. I’ve been using them and they’re so helpful. It’s nice to know there’s companies like yours that are out there to help people.

Possibilities Grant Recipient
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