Eating your food can be messy business if you are able bodied, young, old or somewhere in between. Making a mess, spilling your milk, or dropping food on your shirt happens to all of us at one time or another. Having limited mobility or dexterity can turn a, once enjoyable dining experience, into a dreaded, unwanted experience.
The following dining tools will assist in making the eating experience easier and more enjoyable.
- Scooper Plate
- Weighted Utensils
- Utensils with big grips
- Bent utensils
- Cup with handles
- Cup with lid
- Plate Guard
- Non Slip surfaces
- Adult bibs/clothing protectors
Scooper Plate - The scooper plate is more like a small bowl (or a plate with a rim). It makes lifting the food from the plate easier. Because of the rim, less food is likely to fall on the table. Some scooper plates have an anti slip surface on the bottom so the plate does not slide around while eating.
Weighted Utensils - Weighted utensils usually look just like your regular stainless steel spoon, fork, and knife. The only difference is that they are quite a bit heavier. The weight is in the handle. Having a heavier utensil makes it easier for people with shaky hands (such as in Parkinson’s Disease) to grasp and hold on to the utensil. The nice thing about the utensils is that they still look nice. Anyone could use them.
Utensils with Big Grips - Utensils with large handles can be purchased almost anywhere. These handles are usually black, rubber and have a good gripping surface. You can find the big grips in cheese slicers, spatulas, spoons, peelers and more. They are especially nice and easy to use. I would recommend them to anyone.
Bent Utensils - Online specialty stores offer bent utensils. You can buy right angle and left angle utensils. Many of the utensils have an easy to bend handle. In this way, you can manipulate the handle to the best angle that will aid in easier eating.
Cups with Handles and Lids - Cups that have large, easy to grip handles can make drinking much easier. These cups are good for those that have shaky hands and risk spilling or dropping the cup. Those with limited strength in their hands can also benefit from cups with handles as well as lids.
Plate Guard - A plate guard is a plastic lip that fits around a standard plate. A plate guard does the same thing as a scooper plate. The nice thing about a plate guard is that you do not need to purchase new plates. You can use your regular plate and put the guard on it so food does not fall easily off the plate. The guard acts as a guide to get the food up and off the plate.
Non-Slip Surfaces - As mentioned above, many scooper plates have a non-slip surface on the bottom. There are also more and more serving bowls that come with an anti sip surface. This is a great feature because you do not have to hold onto the bowl with both of your hands; you can stir without worrying about the bowl falling on the floor. Non slip surface material is also available in grocery stores that can be cut into squares and used under bowls, plates and more. This is an easy and inexpensive solution for stopping the movement of bowls and plates.
Adult Bibs - Adult bibs or clothing protectors as they are often called can be very helpful in keeping food and liquid off of clothing. Adult bibs now come in decorative designs as well as standard terry cloth and disposable or wipe clean options. Wearing a clothing protector makes sense and can save on extra washing and stain removal of good clothing.