Celebrating inclusive communities | Célébrons nos communautés inclusives
Inspirations Articles

There’s a hack for that: Hackability to launch soon

Joanne Charron
Comfy slipper socks can be used as mittens or as an 'insta-boot' in the winter.
Thursday, May 19, 2022

by Joanne Charron

Joanne CharronCharronAre you constantly adapting the world around your handicapped loved one to meet their needs? Are you always “MacGyvering” creative, quick solutions when you are in a bind? If so, you are not alone. I have spent over 25 years doing the same, and now I want to share a few of my solutions with you and learn about yours. 

If you simply cannot wait for an appointment with the occupational or physical therapist, or speech-language pathologist for a solution to a complex issue, I have good news! Whether you have an issue with feeding, positioning, comfort, dressing, recreation or a multitude of other areas in your loved one’s life, there is always a hack to help you out. 

Here are some examples:

Hack #1: Insta-boot

If your loved one has issues wearing boots because their foot is hyperextended all the time or deformed, insert an insulated boot liner into an extra-large insulated sock. Voilà! You have an instant boot that is soft and easy to put on.

Hack #2: Insta-snow pants

Snow pants for wheelchair users is complicated. They are cumbersome to put on, and the seatbelt often has to be adjusted. And when you reach your destination, you have to transfer your loved one to remove them. I use leg warmers instead. Put them over their pants so that you can just pull them off when you have arrived without having to take your child out of their wheelchair. You can also use thigh-high socks under their pants.

These types of hacks can be lifesavers. They are so valuable that we like to share them with our friends, tell them what’s worked in a pinch and try out theirs. 

To facilitate this exchange, my son and I decided to take it to the next level. We are excited to introduce Hackability, a forum where we can all share our hacks, crazy ideas, and where we can search for solutions. As a social media initiative, Hackability will touch on all facets of life, from how to adapt food, toys, your home or other areas for wheelchair users to ways of addressing comfort, pressure sores, dressing for all seasons, wheelchair accessories and more, such as how to prepare for a hospital stay. We’ll also suggest what communication and smart products are available for your home and show you double-duty products, such as the legwarmers and insulated socks, we used to address a need and solve a problem. All our hacks will include a link to the products we used and where to get them. 

Look out for Hackability, launching soon on social media. (We will announce it on the Inspirations Facebook page.) We want you to be part of the community and would love for you to share your favourite hacks with us in the meantime at hackability.ca@gmail.com.

Joanne Charron is the president of The C.A.R.E. Centre and special advisor to Inspirations. Contact her at charronjoanne@gmail.com.