10 Things a Family Members of a New Amputee Should See
How to prepare for living with an amputee spouse you love and lessen the shock of coming home after surviving an agonizing life experience.
I had my right leg amputated below the knee in March of 2021. After fumbling through the first few months, I found some products that eased the anxiety of daily living. I wish I had seen this list when looking at home modifications for amputees in rehab before I came home.
These are all items that I have bought in the last 8 months and used. I will try to list them in order of importance but I feel like all of these items are essential for my day-to-day peace of mind.
The First Day Home After Amputation
These are necessary items to have in your home when a new leg amputee comes home. They are not flashy or sexy but they are what you need to start a new amputee on the road back to a normal life.
All the items listed are available from Amazon so every purchase is safe and easy plus, that is where I get them so you are sure to get the same products that I am showing you.
Plus if you buy through the links I provided, I will get a small commission and you won’t pay a penny more. It helps me to keep providing Informative information to you!
1. Toilet Chair.
You can use this by the bed or, as I use it, sitting over the toilet. After a hospital stay going to the bathroom on my own was a way to reclaim some of my personal dignity. I like this one because of its adjustability, versatility, and the fact that the handles to either side drop down out of the way. I will show the importance of that feature in the next item’s description. Get it here!
2. Shower needs
First, a shower seat was a great way to lose that helpless feeling. I was able to adjust this at the same height as my Toilet Seat. That way I can transfer from my wheelchair to the toilet seat, drop the toilet seat’s side handle out of the way and then slide easily into the shower. Get it here!
3. Hand Shower Head.
This is the most efficient way to take a seated shower and make it easier to get totally clean. Get it here!
4. Shower Handles
These handles and mount easily with a strong suction system and finish out the independent shower experience.
Shower Handles. These work great and are heavy-duty. Get it here!
5. Remote Handshower Mount.
The suction mount means quick removal if you want. If you are sitting down this makes a shower SO much easier! Get it here!
6. Portable Urinals
I use these at night to keep from getting into my wheelchair or putting on my prosthetic several times a night. I also keep one in my vehicle just in case. This link is for six of them. Get it here!
Speaking of my vehicle…
7. Left Foot Gas Pedal Adapter
I lost my right leg and that made driving a real problem. This thing moves the gas pedal to the left of the brake pedal and you just pick it up and move it to make way for another driver. It only took me about ten minutes to adjust it for use in the vehicle. You will need a couple of wrenches and an Allen wrench to adjust it but any mechanic could adjust it in 5-15 minutes. This thing is truly a lifesaver for me. Get it here!
8. Extended Lenth Grabber
Sitting in a wheelchair gives you a whole new outlook on the world. Everything is designed for upright people. A grabber is essential for day-to-day living. I promise. Get it here!
9. Wheel Chair Pad
This thing is made for cars but it is great in a wheelchair! Wheelchair pads are EXPENSIVE but this one is not only affordable but you would not believe how handy that handy front pocket is. Get it here!
10. Exercise Cycle
I put this thing on my desk while watching YouTube videos. It raises my metabolism and gets my blood pumping. It is an easy way to exercise. Get it here!
I have added these and more automation to my home to schedule lights to go on and off and use voice commands to add convenience to my daily life. You will need internet and wifi to use these but most likely you have it. The ones I chose are the easiest to set up and I have added several others all over my home. Heck, the Dot will even turn my Roku TV on and off and even pause programs.
This set is an easy way to step into the convenience of Alexa. She can play music, podcasts, Audible books, control lighting, and so much more. This combo has an Alexa Dot and a plug-in outlet controller. Get it here!
The next step.
This plug-in adapter combo will allow Alexa to control 4 more plug-in appliances Plus a wall switch to replace a regular wall switch! Get it here!
Alexa Show and a Ring Door Bell combo.
You can start with this Combo to have a handle on who is at your door from wherever you put the Alexa Show plus it will let you see, hear, and speak to anyone from your phone, tablet, or PC. Get it here!
Life is not necessarily over!
How can you care for yourself at home alone?
- Be active. Talk to your doctor about what you can do. If you are active and use your remaining limb, it will heal faster.
- You may shower when your doctor okays it. Wash the remaining limb with soap and water, and pat it dry. You may need help doing this at first.
- You may need to adapt your car to your situation before you drive.
- You will probably be able to return to work and your usual routine when your remaining limb heals. This can be as soon as 4 to 8 weeks after surgery, but it may take longer.
- You can eat your normal diet. If your stomach is upset, try bland, low-fat foods like plain rice, broiled chicken, toast, and yogurt.
- You may notice that your bowel movements are not regular right after your surgery. This is common. Try to avoid constipation and straining with bowel movements. Take a fibre supplement every day. If you have not had a bowel movement after a couple of days, ask your doctor about taking a mild laxative.
- Your doctor will tell you if and when you can restart your medicines. He or she will also give you instructions about taking any new medicines.
- If you take aspirin or some other blood thinner, ask your doctor if and when to start taking it again. Make sure that you understand exactly what your doctor wants you to do.
- Be safe with medicines. Take pain medicines exactly as directed.
- If the doctor gave you a prescription medicine for pain, take it as prescribed.
- If you are not taking a prescription pain medicine, ask your doctor if you can take an over-the-counter medicine.
- If you think your pain medicine is making you sick to your stomach:
- Take your medicine after meals (unless your doctor has told you not to).
- Ask your doctor for a different pain medicine.
- If your doctor prescribed antibiotics, take them as directed. Do not stop taking them just because you feel better. You need to take the full course of antibiotics