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Things progressing

Hi All,

My hubby’s MS has been progressing lately and climbing stairs are getting harder for him.

We can’t afford to move and we have been assessed for a stairlift and have been told we will have to pay in full for it.
What solutions have you found can be of help. Our house is not wheelchair friendly so using one in the home is not good.

Thanks

Caz

Hi, difficult one this. you say you can`t afford to move and using a wheelie inside is not a good idea.

Catch 22, eh? So what can I suggest? Mmm.

We live in a 60s bungalow. Whilst the rooms aren`t a bad size, the hallway is narrow. We have removed doors to most rooms and put a sliding one on the bathroom.

I am a full time wheelie user, so there are numerous chips, scratches and gouges in the walls and doorways. Hubby is fed up of patching up after me, but i feel awful about it and it does look a mess. he even put metal guards in some area and i`ve even had a fight with them.

My poor house looks battle scarred!

As I said, difficult problem to solve, I`m afraid.

luv Pollx

Hi Caz, has you hubby had an OT (occupational therapist) assessment? They come round the house and take a look at your mobility and can advise on solutions… some of which are free (provided by local authority). I’m not sure what the criteria is to get it free, but you can ask your GP to refer you or I think you can self-refer (number should be on you local authority website).

They recently put in a level-access shower for me. I think they can also provide ‘grab-rails’ and other aids and adaptations. They gave me a bed-bar which helps me getting in and out of bed. Very useful.

Around the house I ‘furniture walk’… steady myself on furniture and walls as I move around. On bad days I use a walking stick indoors. There are good 4-wheel walkers available if you have enough indoor space (though if you haven’t space for a wheelchair you probably haven’t).

The stairlift companies usually have used ones for sale much cheaper than new. Check them out online.

Also, could consider the smaller ‘forearm’ crutches of indoors. Again, OT can provide them or you can buy them online.

Hope this helps,

Pat x

Caz,

No doubt - you are in a difficult position. l am glad that Polly and Pat have answered as l know they have experience of what can and should be done. When you do get an OT to come and advise you - make sure they realise how your partners disability is progressing - and sooner rather then later you need help. As Polly has said - some interior walls - if they are stud walls - can be easily removed to make your home more open planned. As for the stairlift - l wonder if a charity could help with the cost. Not just the MS societies - but perhaps your local ‘Lions’ or Round Table. Another thought is your local newspaper - lf they knew the situation you are in -would they do a story which might prompt some action from your local council/businesses etc. The village l live in has a charitable trust which owns 10 rental properties - and also they will pay for such items as stair-lifts etc. for anyone living in the parish. There has got to be an answer to your problems. lts a case of making sure the right people know the exact circumstances. You need a spokes-person - who can do just that ‘Speak up for you’. A local/district councillor perhaps. When we were trying to get planning permission for our house extension - after being turned down many times - l did turn to two local councillors and they were brilliant. They spoke up for us and persuaded the planners to pass our plans.

Best wishes to you both - and l hope you get many more replies with more practical help.

F.

A Big thank you to everyone that has replied.

The OT has been involved and they say we will have to pay for any works that has to be done. I guess it’s a budget thing once again. The only thing we will have to do is check out charities that maybe can help.

Thanks

Caz

I realise money is tight, but I have recently ordered a stairlift. I got a 30% reduction by taking a used stairlift. Unfortunately, my stair has two curves so the track has to be custom made, but the actual chair is second hand.

If your stair is straight, you should be able to get the whole stairlift second hand, possibly under £1000.

If you decide to follow this up, get at least three quotes, don’t be shy! I found extreme variations!

Good luck!

John

I thought there was a one of payment to make adjustments to your house? I thought, ( I might be wrong) it was around £3,000 available from the goverment??? Try the CAB, ms nurse, gp for advice

bump

Hi Caz, I’ve never seen your house so it’s guesswork a bit here, you have had good replies and very valid points about Walls which can be removed etc. Btw i don’t use a wheelchair in the house myself. Could your hubby get a slimline chair to use about the house, which might fit doorways or could you widen the doorways. There is also the issue of the stairs. Have you considered an extension to give you a downstairs bedroom, I know cost is an issue here but you would get it vat free for a disabled person, could you put it on the mortgage, could you afford a more suitable house in a different area where the prices are cheaper. I’m sure you’ve probably already considered those, I’m starting to struggle with stairs a bit more too ad we are away to build an extension to give us a downstairs bedroom, I just know from what the architect said that many different types of extension are possible, including converting a garage. Cheryl:-)

Hi Caz, I’ve never seen your house so it’s guesswork a bit here, you have had good replies and very valid points about Walls which can be removed etc. Btw i don’t use a wheelchair in the house myself. Could your hubby get a slimline chair to use about the house, which might fit doorways or could you widen the doorways. There is also the issue of the stairs. Have you considered an extension to give you a downstairs bedroom, I know cost is an issue here but you would get it vat free for a disabled person, could you put it on the mortgage, could you afford a more suitable house in a different area where the prices are cheaper. I’m sure you’ve probably already considered those, I’m starting to struggle with stairs a bit more too ad we are away to build an extension to give us a downstairs bedroom, I just know from what the architect said that many different types of extension are possible, including converting a garage. Cheryl:-)