Household Chronic Illness Hacks

Household Chronic Illness Hacks

Spoonie life means constantly looking for ways to simplify daily tasks to conserve energy and minimize stress. For many of us navigating the ups and downs of our conditions, finding ways to make household chores easier can make a significant difference. In other worlds, household chronic illness hacks are key, allowing you more time and energy to focus on what truly matters—your health and happiness!

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The information in this blog post is provided for educational and informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking it because of something you have read online. The author of this post is not a licensed medical professional and does not assume any liability for any actions taken based on the information contained in this post.

1. Maximize Your Mobility

Mobility can be a major issue when dealing with chronic pain or fatigue. Consider rearranging your living space for easier access to frequently used items. Keep essentials within reach—this might mean reorganizing your kitchen or bathroom to avoid bending or stretching to reach often-used products. Investing in a grabber tool can also help you fetch items without excessive movement or strain.

When it comes to home management tasks like cleaning with chronic illness, don’t be afraid to utilize your go-to mobility aids or even sit in a rolling chair to tackle your list of chores. If something helps you be more mobile, it’s worth it—even if you feel a little silly or like you shouldn’t need to use these tools.

2. Automate What You Can

Technology can be a lifesaver for those of us with chronic illnesses. Automate your home with smart devices like thermostats, lights, and curtains to reduce the need for physical exertion. My personal favorite is using smart bulbs with my Echo Show! When I’m in bed with a flare (or a kitty fast asleep on me), the last thing I want to do is get up and hit the light switch.

Using voice-controlled assistants can help you manage everything from making shopping lists to setting reminders for medication without having to move from your comfortable spot. I’ve also taken advantage of tools like Apple’s Shortcuts app to make tasks like my grocery list just a little bit easier.

3. Simplify Cleaning Tasks

As the incomporable KC Davis puts it, you can’t save the rain forest if you’re depressed—and the same is true if you’re suffering in agony from your chronic illness. Depending on your symptoms and triggers, some single-use tools may be crucial. For instance, you might switch to no-rinse cleaning wipes and sprays to save energy on tasks like cleaning surfaces and mopping floors.

It’s equally important to prioritize chronic illness-friendly cleaning tools. Use a lightweight cordless vacuum or a robotic vacuum cleaner to keep your floors clean without much physical effort. If you find dishwashing tiring, consider using disposable plates and cutlery during flare-ups. You can even find compostable plates and cutlery to help you be both sustainable and spoonie-ready!

4. Meal Preparation Shortcuts

Cooking can be exhausting, so it’s essential to find shortcuts that save time and effort. Strategies like batch cooking and freezing meals for the week can drastically reduce the daily workload. You can also use slow cookers or pressure cookers to make meals with minimal effort. If your budget allows, purchasing pre-cut produce and other ready-to-cook ingredients can make a huge difference.

Ready-to-eat meals or meal delivery services can also be valuable, especially on days when cooking feels impossible. I’ve had a fantastic experience with Hello Fresh! I’ve been meaning to put together a proper review, so stay tuned for that coming soon.

5. Optimize Laundry Efforts

Doing laundry is another high-energy activity that can be streamlined. Use a rolling laundry basket to avoid carrying heavy loads and consider an elevated, front-loading washer and dryer to reduce bending and squatting. If your living situation allows for it, you can even try putting dirty clothes into the washer directly and skip the basket entirely!

Fabric softeners, dryer balls, and specialized wrinkle release sprays can minimize the effort needed for ironing by keeping your clothes ready-to-wear. I take these household chronic illness hacks a step further using the Whering app to plan my outfits each week. This way, I don’t have to waste precious executive function on deciding what to wear!

6. Manage Medications Efficiently

Organizing medications can be daunting. Use pill organizers that allow you to sort medications by time of day or even the week. Apps that remind you to take your pills and track your prescriptions can also be useful household chronic illness hacks. I use the built-in Apple Health app these days but had a good experience using Medisafe before the function arrived!

7. Create Restful Retreats

Your home should be a sanctuary that supports your health on good days and bad. Use your favorite household chronic illness hacks to create restful spaces where you can easily relax and recharge. For me, this is my bed! Keep essentials like chargers, water, snacks, and entertainment within easy reach of your rest areas to minimize movement when you need to conserve energy. You could even put together a three-tier cart full of chronic illness essentials! Right now, I’m doing something similar with my nightstand.

8. Do Things the “Wrong” Way

When you really think about it, a lot of the “rules” surrounding cleaning and home management aren’t exactly necessary. Who says you can’t sit on a stool while washing dishes? Why do you fold tees or socks instead of tossing them into a clean bin or basket? When you give yourself permission to do things “incorrectly,” you’ll find that a lot of household chronic illness hacks are easier than you might think.

9. Invest in Accommodations

Whatever aspect of home management you’re focused on, there’s probably an accessibility aid that could help. Do you struggle to access items that are out of your reach or beyond your grasp? Try a step stool or grabber tool. Forever fighting with jars, cans, or bottles? Try gadgets like this silicone jar opener or Tab Buddies, a small business I recently discovered on Instagram (are you following us yet?).

Implementing these household chronic illness hacks can help transform your living space into a more comfortable, functional environment that supports your chronic illness needs. Remember, the goal is to minimize stress and physical exertion, so adapt these suggestions to fit your specific situation and capabilities.

Do you have any household chronic illness hacks that have made spoonie life easier? Share your tips in the comments below or tag us @AnIdealLifeBlog across social media!

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