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Image of a stair lift chair, bathtub support bar and bed with support railing.

Adapting My Home Fabulously For NMO

Over the triumphs and tribulations of dealing with NMO, I’ve had to adapt my home. Thankfully, I have a handy husband who love home projects (said no husband ever) and I consider myself a very creative person. Together we have accomplished an adaptive home that fits my constant need of physical change while on a budget. I would like to share some tips and tricks how I managed to make my house handicap accessible while on a budget. 

Getting a stair lift

Stairs were becoming extremely hard for me to climb when my spasms and foot drop started kicking in. At times I had to swing my hips to rotate my leg up to make it to the next step because my knee wouldn’t bend. There was time when I needed someone to physically hold my ankles to lift my foot to the next step because my foot drop would let my toes lift. Side notes ladies: this is when I realized the toenail gel was a better option for pedicures rather than regular nail polish.

Other times, my husband would throw me over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes because I was either to weak or fatigued to even go up the stairs. My husband’s back was starting to suffer the consequences of all the lifting, and it was time to look at more viable options. 

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Finding a deal on Facebook Marketplace

At first, I was opposed to adapting my home because I’ve worked very hard for it to look esthetically pleasing to my eye and liking. But then I warmed up to the idea of having tools and devices to become more independent. I started researching stairlift companies to make my three-level home more accessible to me. I was getting ridiculous quotes of $5,000 to $6,000 per lift, and I had 2 staircases, so were talking almost $12,000. While is great, we were on a budget and looked at other options. Surprisingly Facebook marketplace had a few options way cheaper! After weeks of looking for the correct sizing, we found 2 stair lifts, one at a price of $700 and another at $650, what a deal!

Unfortunately, the owners had pass and the family members were getting rid of their stuff. But this a great example of one man’s trash is another's treasure! 

The need for more than one wheelchair

Next, I needed a wheelchair on each level of the home for many reasons. If there were ever an emergency and I was alone I needed a plan that involved having access to all exits of the house. Or if I wanted to independently wanted to do laundry on the bottom floor, I could do that. So, I bought 2 light weight fold up wheelchairs on amazon for around $200 each. This way the I had a chair on each floor nicely folded, out of others ways, but ready for my use if needed. On the door frames where the lift stair started and ended, we screwed and secured in place grab bars for safety reason. Anytime I get in or out of my chair for transfers I had a grab bar handle. 

Bed rails

Moving on to bedroom. When my mother started noticing my reality and how bad my spasms were getting she gifted me a new bed. But not any ordinary bed, she gifted me a mechanical bed that the upper back or the foot would come up with a remote control or an app on my phone. This bed change my life and saved my husband back!

In the mornings, I usually wake up very spastic so getting out of bed isn’t easy for me or my husband. Aside from this, I also purchased a metal bed railing to help push my self get out of bed. This cost me about $50 on amazon as well. 

Bathroom updates

In my bathroom, I had a tub which was a nightmare to get into. Can you imagine getting into a tub without being able to bend your knee? No, right? So little old me, who is obsessed with Pinterest and the channel HGTV, basically designed my own bathroom. I had a 1970’s bathroom with black tiles and old school low rising toilet.

Well, I redesigned to an all-white tile and ceramic bathroom with many grab handles. I bought stylish grab bar handles to match my bathroom décor. I also removed that old bulky tub and built a custom stand up show with a custom seat included. Oh baby, If I’m going to have a handicap accessible bathroom you. Better believe it was going to be fabulous! 

Those are some changes I’ve made in my house. Comment below! How has NMO made you change your living space?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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