* This post is written by one of our volunteer content creators - it is not sponsored *
Daily living aids are usually small pieces of equipment used within the home to help people with disabilities live more independently. However, not every item lives up to their sales expectations. So the AYL team have created a series of blog posts highlighting our favourite disability related products, starting with kitchen aids!
As you will see, many of the items listed below are constructed using simple designs, yet they all have the power to make life a little easier, whether you are opening bottles or chopping vegetables.
(Priced At £20.00 To £25.99 Depending On Place Of Purchase)
What a genius idea! Why isn’t everything I own motorised? It is just so clever. As someone with weak wrists that regularly damage themselves, I simply cannot operate a regular tin opener. They also break and get rusty quickly, so there was no going back once I discovered this three in one device. I have really struggled with the amount of time it takes to do anything since being diagnosed with a chronic illness, but now I don’t have to faff around for 20 minutes trying to open a tin whilst my onions charcoal themselves!
How It Works:
Once your tin opener is plugged into the wall, simply lift the black handle whilst hovering your tin/can underneath. The magnet within the machine will then stick to the tin, bringing it close enough for the blade to cut. The mechanical rotating system means the tin spins until the whole circumference is perfectly cut. Whilst the magnet holds onto the lid of the tin until you manually slide it off, preventing you from cutting yourself on metal tin lids! A bonus feature is the discrete bottle opener and electric knife sharpener, both of which frequently come in handy and save you from having multiple devices with different purposes.
This product is a bit of a luxury for able-bodied people, but for someone with reduced motor skills, it is brilliant. I no longer have to wait around or plan to ensure someone can open a tin for me. So perhaps an elderly person who would benefit from being able to open a tin of soup in between care visits would also love this! The only downside is that it isn’t quiet, meaning it could cause some problems for people with sensory processing issues!
(Priced At £18.00 To £21.99 Depending On Place Of Purchase)
Chopping fruits and vegetables has never been easier! After getting tired of someone else having to chop up my vegetables and in turn prevents me from cooking in my own time, I tried several different vegetable choppers. Yet my weakened grip made it impossible to assemble the products, and take them apart for cleaning. Thankfully I discovered this version and now question why I didn’t buy one sooner!
How It Works:
Simply place a piece of veg on the stainless steel blade and push the lid down until you hear a click. Open the lid back up and repeat, it’s really that easy! Hidden features include a raised edge around the cutting area to keep food in place, a non-slip base to provide stability and a lightweight lid to create efficient chopping in one easy motion. There is also a convenient opening on the back for easy pouring, so you don’t have to worry about removing the lid. Best of all, there is a detachable grid that makes it is easy to clean between the blades.
Not only is this product perfect for people of varying abilities, but it’s also particularly useful for people swallowing difficulties as everything is cut into super small cubes. It would also be useful for young children who are picky eaters, as it would allow you to hide fruits and vegetables in a meal.
(Priced At £8.99 To £13.99 Depending On Place Of Purchase)
This is a nifty contraption! This colander can be used like any other, whether you are washing fruit or straining pasta. But it isn’t just a colander, this folds up to the depth of a chopping board so it can be easily stored away. Something I particularly appreciate, as we all know the struggle of ‘that kitchen cupboard’ with all our pans and strainers! You can also adjust the handle length to adapt to any sink size and use it hands-free!
How It Works:
Push the section with holes down to create a bowl-like shape and pull the handles out! The main bowl is a little stiff so I use my fist, but you could always use a utensil to push it down if you didn’t have enough strength. Then you are ready to use it like any normal colander or sieve, and I mean if you’ve never used a sieve or colander before then I’d love to know how you drain your pasta?
Pasta lovers, vegetable growers, rice spillers and everyone in between. Although this may be considered expensive in comparison to other colanders, it is so worth it to make cooking a little more accessible!
(Priced At £1.99 To £7.00 Depending On Place Of Purchase)
This product was not purchased to be used as a ‘disability aid’, but it was immediately apparent how much easier I would find it in comparison to a regular whisk. Typically my wrists seize from the pain caused by quick repetitive movements, causing me to drop the whisk and/or spill the contents I was mixing.
How It Works:
Once the whisk is upright in a mixing bowl and your hand is on the top, this clever design turns one quick push into multiple whisking movements. And unlike bulky electric whisks, it's quick, simple, and easy to clean. No messy wires to deal with or heavy contraptions to lift!
This product is designed for anyone and everyone, regardless of your ability. Definitely, a must have for hot chocolate lovers, omelette eaters or meringue makers as the ingredients mix so evenly, creating a smoother/fluffier/whipped mixture!
(Priced At £3.50 To £4.99 Depending On Place Of Purchase)
Another simple yet effective design. Even though I use this product most days, I don’t consciously think about using it as an ‘aid’. Yet aid is something that helps makes life easier and this most definitely does, along with making the action less painful. Because of this, you will always find a bottle opener in my handbag so that I can open a can or unscrew and bottle lid whilst alone in public. It also works perfectly on makeup bottles, nail polishes, tinned foods and jars. The ergonomic design is well thought out, as it is easy to handle and offers a firm grip between the opener and your hand, even when wet!
How It Works:
Each of the different functions is really easy to operate. When opening a bottle, simply lay it flat on top of your lid and the inside will automatically grip onto the edge of the lid. You then twist the handle round twice and the lid comes right off! Alternatively, the tearing, pulling, turning and twisting actions are just as self-explanatory and easy to complete!
In addition to anyone with reduced dexterity, this item is great for people with dyspraxia, motor/neurological conditions and young children. It’s also perfect for people with active lifestyles who need a little help whilst on the go!
During lockdown, I have acquired a new method of not buying anything unless it makes me smile. But I can honestly say I have never had so much excitement surrounding kitchen aids! Each item was designed for the purpose of making life easier and they all did just that! Although I’m sure you can agree that together these items only cover a small portion of the kitchen, so keep an eye out for part two of this blog next week!