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Walking sticks

Hi I’ve just had the ot out for a home visit and among other things she recommended for me to use a walking stick. The reason is to keep me walking in a straight line because at the moment I’m walking as though I’ve just spent a couple of hours in the pub. I know it’s for the best and will make my life a lot better.

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I’ve tried to hold off as long as possible using walking aids, probably pride but bloody stupid really if I’m honest.

Anyway a few weeks ago I bought myself one of those fold up ones, and I have to be honest, even though I don’t need it full time when walking (yet), it really does help with my balance when I do use it. We are going away on hols in a few weeks and I’ll definitely have it by my side.

Plus it will always come in handy as a “tool” if some clown thinks walking with a limp is funny

Sticks / crutches are a step many of us have to face. And it’s a horrible one. When you first walk with a stick, you feel like everyone is looking at you. For all the wrong reasons. There’s embarrassment, feeling like your doing it ‘wrong’, like you are using a stick too soon, that you’re not really there yet …

But once you get used to the extra safety and support, it’s essential.

When/if you get there, a crutch works better than a stick. Mostly because you can hook the thing over your arm when necessary, and not end up with a stick hitting the floor, which you can’t pick up without falling over!

Best of luck with the new ‘aid’ to independence.

Sue

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Thanks for the advice I think it’s a bit of pride and also people asking why I’m using a stick and then having to explain all over again about my ms ( haven’t had to do that for some years) any way I’m going away next week too so a good chance to give it a go

I wish that my mum would use her stick when she puts the washing out on the line, she is very stubborn and uses the washing line to steady her she doesn’t have MS but she does have a knee replacement and a hip replacement too.

Both on the same leg, she doesn’t use her stick around the house either. I have said she is stubborn she puts the washing out before I can do it, she doesn’t do the washing or getting them in i do that.

It took until she had a broken hip before she used her stick most of the time, still it’s not bad for an eighty year old.

There is still one thing that she does is although she has pain killers she trys to go without even though she has tramadol and paracetamol. She always gives in later and not before it gets to bad and the pills have a hard job to lighten the pain.

Kay

Yes, I progressed to using a stick which helped with balance. A stick also indicated to people to keep their distance and be more considerate like opening doors.

As you said, I started using mine where no one knew me. Just make sure it’s the right height it should be just up to your wrist.

I got a extendable fold up stick that has a wrist strap on it. It came in a plastic wallet with a plastic clip to keep it folded. I just use an elastic hair band. Easy to wrap around stick when it’s in use then easy to wrap round folded stick.

I had to get an extra short so got by post but the shoe repair shop/dry cleaning shops sell them too.

You’ll acquire a whole new group of ‘stick friends!’

Have a nice trip away.

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I took to using a stick several years ago to help with my balance as like a lot of us, I looked like I had just rolled out of the pub! Then a couple of years ago after an accident I’ve graduated to two sticks (as well as a rollator). I’m not embarrassed about them especially as I bought the blingiest ones I could find. I get more comments about them than I get questions about why I am using them. Mine are Switch Sticks. They are a bit more expensive than regular ones, but I don’t care. Its my ‘v’ sign to MS. Enjoy your trip away.

I find using a stick is hard work and sometimes dangerous due to the condition of pathways. I now use a Rollator which is more stable and safer. I`ve renamed it “The Icebreaker” . Plus I can walk quicker using it.

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I bought a Switch Stick too, very nice as far as walking sticks go.

The one I bought was the Kensington, £25 retail, £9.99 on Ebay with free delivery, it’s a genuine item, brand new in original packaging with all correct paperwork ect.

If anyone wants the seller on Ebay let me know.

Once again thanks for all your posts they make me feel a lot better about using my stick. I will update after my holiday. Neil

Selma Blair an actress with MS has owned it her walking stick being seen now on interviews proudly using her cane. She is trying to get a designer to design clothes for people with disability which will be enhanced with a cane. GOOD FOR HER I say. If you break a leg you use a crutch why should using a cane be a sign of weakness. It is a sign of strength as it shows you want to move forward but SAFELY. (I have lots of different coloured ones i can match with my outfits lol). Selma Blair Using Cane For Multiple Sclerosis, New Photo Shows

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Absolutely. Using a stick is infinitely preferable to landing in the gutter in public and having to be hoicked up by strangers. Also good for whacking nettles out of the way or bashing burglars on the ankles…

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Used my stick for the past 4 days a bit strange at first but ok with it now and it’s keeping me on the straight and narrow

Hi there I’m using a stick 8 weeks now for my balance (got a fold up one from Argos). It helps! The looks I get are funny, people look shocked to see a younger person using a stick! I do get people opening doors etc.

Just had a week away and the stick has been very useful so when I get home I will be using it all the time

Well done Neil,

Welcome to the world of stick users!

So glad it has helped you. Hope you had a nice week away, using it on holiday would give you confidence. Now if you see people you know you’ll maybe be more comfortable. Just don’t start using it to point with. Don’t want to give us stick people a bad name!

I find people give me a wide berth or jump out my way when I’m using my stick. A bit like seeing a person with a viscous looking dog!! People apologise like mad too.

Enjoy your new found freedom and a new set of stick friends.

Jen

Back home now so onwards and upwards as they say, think I might find it strange using it were people know me but the benefits outweighs the funny looks I might get.

I have to say I was reluctant to start walking with a stick but since doing so for the last 12 months it has made a big difference to my confidence.

Has anyone got any recommendations as to where I can buy or obtain a longer stick for the taller gentlemen?

I have a stick supplied by the NHS which they had to order and this is the only stick I have that is long enough for me (I’m 6’3"). I do have a few other sticks I have purchased myself but I struggle to find ones that are long enough. The maximum height stated for most is just and inch or two too short for me.

Thanks

Yup, we all have our own thresholds for dignity vs pragmatism and this can vary daily. For me I have had more times of feeling like a chump for not having accepted the reality of my needs. However I wont let that stop me from making the same mistakes again in the future! (give me another 100 years or so and I might actually learn from previous experiences)

I hope we can all embrace the benefits of various “aids” and ignore or cope with the perceived indignities or negative feelings.

All the best

Mick

See if you can find a walking stick shop near to where you live. There you’d be able to try out different sticks, the sales people are generally very good at working out exactly what the correct height is for you. There is a brilliant shop not too far from me where I had great service (it’s in Arundel, West Sussex).

Failing that, try one of the complete care / mobility type websites. (You should also make sure you don’t pay VAT).

Sue

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