Everyone enjoys a good homemade meal, but before you can dig in, you have to prepare it first. Cooking can be a hard task, especially if you have vision or hearing loss. However, if you only make a few adjustments to your kitchen and get a few aids, you’ll be preparing delicious meals in no time.
Here’s what you can do to create a functional kitchen for people with vision and hearing loss.
If you want to make cooking and navigating your kitchen even easier, you might consider removing all sharp edges and opt for rounded tables and countertops. These will cause less painful bumps and fewer spills caused by bumping into something.
Also, pay attention to how you orient your pot and pan handles on the stove, since knocking them can cause severe burns. Additionally, make sure you don’t have any wires and cables over the floor because they can be serious trip hazards.
Smooth and shiny surfaces for countertops, flooring and appliances easily reflect light and create glare. Additionally, glass cabinet doors and clear glasses can also cause glare, but more importantly, they are completely invisible which makes them a hazard unless you mark them clearly.
Adjust the lighting
When you have vision loss, every space needs ample and appropriate lighting, especially a kitchen with all those knives and appliances. Increased illumination makes it easier for people with low vision to navigate their kitchen and prepare food.
On the other hand, poor lighting increases the risk of falls, bumps and even more serious accidents. So, your best bet is to invest in good lighting for your kitchen. Fluorescent strip lights with diffusers offer great distribution of light while spotlights direct ample light in all directions.
Also, bringing light closer to the task at hand is a great way to improve visibility. For instance, installing strip lighting under the kitchen cabinets will provide good lighting in the countertop area. You can also install some lighting in your cupboards and on the shelves for easier food identification. If you combine these lighting fixtures with some standard lamps and hanging pendants, you’ll get a well-illuminated space ready for meal prep.
Another way to make food preparation easier for people with vision loss is to create contrasts. Painting doors, cabinets and walls in contrasting colors with respect to the rest of the room will make them stand out more and make the space easier to navigate.
You can opt for neutral colors and go with dark colors against bright colors (black and white contrast, for instance) but combining darker and lighter shades of the same color can also work, it all depends on your vision level and your personal preference. You can also invest in appliances that have contrasting surfaces such as colorful Viking refrigerators that come in icy white, black, gray, red, blue and beige. Additionally, get contrasting cooking utensils, such as chopping boards, bowls and knives, which will also make it much easier to locate and handle them.
When choosing appliances, make sure they have some sort of contrast on controls to make setting the dials and pressing the buttons simpler. You can also use tactile markers, such as bump-ons or Velcro dots, and apply them to the controls.
Adapting the kitchen for hearing loss
People with limited or no hearing can also benefit from some easy kitchen adaptations. The main issue in the kitchen is the fire alarm. However, there are gadgets that will send visual signals instead of audio ones if there is a fire situation in the kitchen.
People who are deafblind can find vibrating pagers that will alert them of any kitchen happenings, from fire alarms to oven timers. All of these easy fixes will make cooking a much easier, safer and less stressful experience for people with hearing loss.
Don’t be afraid to venture into cooking waters. These kitchen safety tips will keep you safe, so all you need is some inspiration and a good appetite.
No matter if you are living alone or raising an army of kids (that includes your husband), everyday life, and family life in particular, can be extremely taxing on your emotional and psychological well-being. That’s why your bedroom, and your kids’ bedroom, needs to be a kind of peaceful oasis, a place where you can unwind and shed off the stress of the day. However, for most people the bedroom is just a place where they go to bed after a long, hard day.
But what if you could optimize its layout, equip it with elements that support health and vibrancy, and ensure it is safe, healthy, and pleasant to be in? Here are the five essential changes you want to make in your bedroom today to elevate your quality of life.
Clear the clutter
Clutter around the bedroom can accumulate rather quickly, and it is not just that it’s unsightly to look at, but it can be downright dangerous in terms of health and safety. The mess around the room poses a great threat to people living with disabilities, as one can easily trip over clothes or toys.
Even if no one in your family is living with a disability, you still want to regularly and thoroughly declutter the bedroom, throwing or giving away the things you don’t need in order to support safety and health by not letting dust and various pests to make the mess their new home.
Label and organize
Both parents and children can greatly benefit from keeping their bedrooms organized, and their stuff neatly packed in labelled boxes and drawers. This will not only support healthy and positive habits, but it can be extremely time saving for those with vision loss.
Labelling the things around the bedroom in bright colors will help anyone with eyesight problems to find their way around the room more easily, and it just helps keep stuff in its place.
Maintain healthy airflow
Air quality is one of the most important elements in a healthy bedroom environment, and not many people devote their time and attention to elevating the quality of air in their homes in general. Without constant airflow and purification, you are allowing mold, allergens, dust, and harmful bacteria to settle in around the bedroom.
Allowing this to happen can severely impact your long-term health and quality of life, so installing a HEPA air purifier to eliminate air pollutants, gases, allergens, and all other hazardous elements is one of the most important steps in creating a healthy sleeping environment.
Avoid sharp edges
Contrary to popular belief, knives, scissors, and other sharp objects have no business residing in the bedroom. There are plenty of other suitable places around the house where you can keep sharp things, such as the kitchen or a drawer in the living room, but keeping them in the bedroom can put your kids and yourself in unnecessary danger.
Unfortunately, accidents do happen, and they happen more often than you think. You want to exercise safety at all times, and keep sharp objects away from children, only allowing them to use them under guidance and constant supervision.
Bedroom Hygiene 101
Finally, bedroom hygiene is as important as air quality, and maintaining a clean sleeping environment by changing the sheets and pillowcases regularly, approximately every week, is the first step. This way you will eliminate harmful dust mites, mold spores, and bacteria that could otherwise damage your health.
Secondly, be sure to vacuum thoroughly every week to eliminate dust and dirt that might have settled down on the floors, and don’t forget to clean the room with homemade cleaning products. Making your own cleaning products is not only healthier because of the absence of harmful chemicals, but it is also infinitely lighter on the budget.
Your bedroom should be a place of peace, positivity, and serenity, a true oasis and sanctuary amidst the troubles of everyday life. Be sure to implement these essential tips and you will have created your very own oasis the entire family will love.
Finally, you have that dream car you have been waiting and saving for. You, however, need to maintain its value from the start, so act wisely now and don’t wait for when you want to sell it or gift it to start taking care of it.
Maintaining the value of your car shows how responsible you are and what your car truly means to you. Your car doesn’t lose value in one day, but rather over a prolonged period. You will eventually need to sell or trade in your car at some point, and you need its value to be higher for a variety of reasons, including trade in or resale. It will not be the same as when you bought it, but it will command a decent price.
So, let’s look at how we can keep the value high on that car.
Drive Your Car with Care
This may seem obvious, and we tend to think if we watch out during dangerous conditions or do the easy things like making sure we have the best windshield wipers for rain, we will be fine.
But that isn’t enough.
Don’t make it a habit to hard-drive your car; and if you can, don’t hard-drive it at all. It may seem to be fun, but you are accelerating wear and tear.
Car Wash Soap
You should never use household soap when it comes to car cleaning, always ensure you use proper car wash soap. This will help you maintain your car because it is mild and compliments the paint. Ensure you wash your car regularly, make it at least weekly and you will soon get into the routine.
Benefits of washing your car regularly with car wash soap include:
1. The car finish lasts extremely long
2. Your car appearance will always be in tip top shape – if it looks cared for on the outside, then it is likely to be cared for on the inside, and this means a lot to potential buyers.
You should also ensure that you clean up any stains as soon as they happen. Yes, cars are generally designed to resist stains, but it only works well if you clean the stains and spills immediately after they occur.
Keep Your Car in Your Garage
When you look at most houses, people tend to use their garage for everything else but not storing the car. Most people use it as storage and leave their cars in the driveway.
This is never a good idea because when your car is outside, it is exposed to the elements. Sunlight, heat, rain, cold, snowstorms, all these will make the value of your car to decline by putting wear and tear on the exterior. It happens so slowly that you may not notice immediately, but you will notice over time. The garage offers additional protection from debris and wayward items.
When it comes to cars, the mechanical problems always seem to be gradual and progressive. Have your car looked at by a reputable mechanic every so often, even when it seems to be working just fine?
You should also visit the mechanic every time there is anything unusual like noises. This will ensure your car engine always running quiet and smooth, helping to maintain your car’s value. The engine noises are always a cause for alarm and mostly signify huge problems.
Taking your car for regular tune-up will ensure you save a lot because repairing issues when they always begin costs less.
Regular Oil Changes
This is the easiest way to maintain your car value. This can prevent your engine from facing major problems and having an oil change is affordable costing about $40 per change.
Regular oil changes also ensure your car performance is always optimum.
Protect Your Vinyl Surfaces
If you live in places with a lot of heat and sunlight, your car surface will be destroyed and wear out quite quickly. Even though it does not mean your car has engine problems, the appearance makes it not look well maintained. This will have a negative effect on your car value.
You can easily maintain the vinyl surface of your car with protective products. Do this around twice a year, and your car will always look new and well maintained - after all, appearance is everything.
Wax Your Car
This always helps you maintain the color, and as you may know, the paint quality is what a potential buyer will look at first. Dull paint always creates an impression of poor maintenance and mechanical problems.
Even those of us who truly enjoy gardening have to admit that having a perfect garden requires time. Late summer and fall is the right time to wind things up and do the final preparations for the cold season.
This is the time when we all get a break from constant mowing, watering, and weeding. However, nobody would like to find their garden a mess when the spring comes so there are a couple of things you can do and ensure this does not happen.
Aerate and fertilize the ground
Aeration is something that your lawn will enjoy as it has been walked on for months. It can be as simpleas poking random holes in the ground and that is sufficient if you are not experiencing any major issues with your lawn. The most convenient tool for doing this is the garden fork. Prior to aeration, rake your lawn to make sure you remove leaves and thatch. Once the poking is done use the fertilizer of your choice and spread some sand.
Remove withered plants
Go through your garden and remove any dead plants, most of these are annuals but if you see that one of your perennials is dead with no chance of springing back up, you can dig it out as well. Add this organic material to your compost bin.
Pruning and weeding
What you need to do now is take care of the remaining plants. First of all, take out anything you do not want in your garden. Not digging weed up will either result in it spreading or it will end up not surviving the cold and you will have to deal with it in spring.
Once you get rid of the weed, move onto perennials as they can also threaten to take over your garden by spreading. You sure like them but you like them at the spot you have selected for them. Collect the weeds and the pruning clippings and off to the compost pile with them.
Replant and protect bulbs, rhizones, corms and tubers
If you have noticed over their blooming season that some of your perennials are struggling for water and sunlight, replant them to an appropriate location. Also, if you have noticed that certain patches are overcrowded, you can make a selection by removing or replanting some of them.
Target those perennials sensitive to cold and leave them in your cellar to keep them safe during winter. Please be gentle when handling the plants which are still alive.
Pamper your tools
Your gardening tools will be out of work for some time. Once you are done using them, make sure you wash and dry them carefully. Once that is done you can remove any traces of rust and sharpen those that need to be sharp.
Just before you put them away for winter, make sure you oil them up with machine oil to protect the metal. Every Australian garden tools supplier advises that basic gardening tools can be long lasting if you take good care of them. Do not get rid of any piece of your equipment just because it is not sharp or it is a bit crooked until you try fixing it first.
Fertilize your garden
Once you have decided who is staying and who is leaving, fertilize the soil. After fertilizing the raised beds, cover them up to make sure the rain does not wash out the fertilizer.
Also, seek professional advice on which cover crop is best used in your region and plant it. These are usually legumes and they can help add nitrogen to the soil so they are your natural fertilizer.
Protect and cover
Protect the young perennials by adding a coat of mulch to help keep the ground around them warmer. If you use solid-fuel heaters you can even use ash to keep the certain plants warm.
Cover up your pond or any other body of water you have in your garden unless you have an actual river in your backyard. The cover will protect the water from debris piling up. Birdbaths are best emptied and covered up as if you are from an area with fierce winters, you can expect for any water left in it to freeze and break the bath.
One last piece of advice is to try and find evergreens which can fit your garden, particularly the ones that bloom. You do not want your garden to be a gloomy prospect so make sure there is some color in it all year round.
We all need to get some sleep and rest. Sleep helps us in so many ways, keeping our mind and body working at top performance. It is critical to our health and wellbeing.
Best of all it keeps people from being cranky and unhealthy. If you're the type of person that has a tough time getting to sleep, this information might help.
Here are the do's and don'ts of getting a good night of sleep.
Create a Relaxing Sleeping Environment
If you want to get to sleep, then you must relax. So, having a relaxing sleeping environment is key to sleeping well.
You create a relaxing sleeping space by turning off the lights and eliminating all noise. Turn off your cellphones, tablets, computers, TVs and the radio.
Relaxing Bedding and Sheets
Bedding is very important to get a good night’s sleep. The right type of bedding will make you feel comfortable. Soft sheets bed sheets will help you to unwind and relax.
You can buy cotton sheets for the summer time to keep cool during those warm nights. Flannel sheets are best for the winter if you tend to be cold.
The right form of pillows, covers, and sheets are also essential for sleep.
Establish a Sleep Routine
You should establish a sleep routine to make it easier to fall asleep. A sleep routine will help you to rest better because your body will get used to the schedule.
Every day your body will recognize that it is time to shut down and rest. Consistency is the key to making this work.
Figure Out What’s Keeping You Awake at Night
If you can not fall asleep easily, it may help to figure out why. Write down what is running through your mind and then address it in the morning or next day, during daylight hours.
You may find that you have a different perspective this way, and perhaps some clarity or a new way of thinking about the issue. Once you find out the problem, try and resolve it. If you are worrying about something, then figure out how to stop. The point is to deal with anything that is keeping you up at night.
Stress not only puts a damper on your ability to fall asleep, but it also can affect the quality of sleep that you get when you eventually doze off.
Don't Eat Before Bed
Do not eat before you go to bed for at least 2-3 hours. If you do, eat a light meal or snack.
Eating, especially before bed, has been known to keep people awake because your body is at work digesting.
Avoid Caffeine, Medication, and Alcohol
You probably already know that caffeine and drugs will keep your body and mind active. If you take these substances before sleeping, then you will probably stay up all night long. Unless medication is specifically for the sleeping hours, avoid taking it before bed.
Using Sleep Aids
While some over the counter or prescription sleep aids are beneficial, you should first try natural remedies. There are teas and elixirs to drink before bed that can relax you, essential oils, sound devices, and breathing techniques that may assist with helping your body to shut down.
Hot Water and Sleep
Hot water works wonders for relaxing the body and inducing a sleepy mindset. People that take a hot shower or a relaxing bath may find that they more easily go to sleep.
Are you napping during the day? If you are doing this because of a lack of sleep at night, you may be feeding right into the problem. Napping could worsen the problem if you are doing it at the wrong time, but done properly; it can offer the benefits of relaxation and improved mood and performance during the day.
However, if you can take a quick nap during the day, you may not be affecting your nighttime sleep.
Exercise During the Day
People that exercise in the day and regularly have had better results sleep at night. You should exercise to help you sleep better as well as to reduce anxiety and stress that may be keeping you awake at night.
Even moderate activity on a regular basis will help with sleep disorders, and it has been found to beneficial to addressing a variety of sleep deprivation issues.
Whether it’s partial or complete deafblindness, when they’re home people with hearing and sight difficulties need to feel comfortable, safe and completely in charge of their surroundings.
Acquired deafblindness can be frustrating and scary. It forces people to rethink their habits, their needs, and their environment.
To help deafblind people gain their independence, we’ve hand-selected 7 ways to adapt your house in order to accommodate them.
1. Lighting Changes
Whether they live in a studio, apartment or house, one of the first and most important changes for a deafblind person’s environment should be lighting.
Changing the placement of light fixtures can also help better illuminate dark spaces:
• Choose the brightest light bulbs. These will come in handy in darker spaces where accidents tend to happen such as the bathroom or on the stairway. Invest in fluorescent bulbs – they emit a more powerful light and they last longer.
• Be generous with the light fixtures. Illuminate the house entirely, including the hallways, closets, and outside.
2. Interior Design Adjustments
The home of a deafblind person should be a safe haven. Here are some tips to help you create exactly that.
Electrical items can be tricky to get used to. But it’s not impossible for deafblind people to use them.
Here’s how you can make it go smoother for them.
4. Bathroom Adaptations
This type of adjustment is essential for safety.
Here’s how to adapt a bathroom for deafblind people:
5. Hallway Adaptations
Hallways shouldn’t be overlooked when you are working on adapting a home for a deafblind person.
Here’s what you should know about corridor adaptations:
6. Outdoor Adaptations
To make it easier to deafblind people to go out or access the garden, here’s what you should keep in mind about outdoor adaptations:
7. Security Adaptations
There are special alerting systems designed for people with hearing and sight difficulties that keep them informed about what is happing: phone ringing, smoke alarm going off or someone at the door.
About the Author:
John Stuart works on behalf of raisedfloor.co.ukin outreach and content creation. He creates engaging content that help businesses connect with their audience and stand out from the crowd