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clint

How do you bath?

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Hi

I feel kinda funny asking this question but how do you bath? Here is how my day goes, I always have my prostitic leg, krutches,socks,linner beside the bed so when I get up in the morning I slip on my leg as soon as I get out of bed. The kruches are there so that if I wake up and want a drink or use the rest room in the midle of the night. I think it is a safty thing in my mind if there was a emergency and I had to run out of the house I have all my prostitic tool of the trade on hand if needed right beside the bed. I do not take off my leg all day untill bed time. I go to the bed edge take off my leg and grab my krutches and go to take a bath. I have a shower chair and I use that to bath. I wash my linner,put on my shrinker and go to bed. Same sequence every day. When I first lost my leg I thought this was so much trouble but know its just part of my rutine.My doctor told me it is best to take a bath at night becouse it gives my residual leg time to breath without the sweat and oil your body makes under the linner. I have just took a bath in the tub but I am afraid of falling down getting out of the tub. How do all of you go through your dayly rutine? How long do you were a shrinker at night? I have heard of people useing shower legs but wouldn't you still have to set down to wash your leg? I also reolize that everyones home is aranged differntly and with differnt styles of tubes and showers. I am hoping to mabe find out easier way to go about things.

See ya!

Clint

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Hiya-I use a bathboard. It's quite a simple board that adjusts to fit the width of your bath. You just sit it across and use it to sit on to take off your leg and then you can use just lower yourself into the bath. These days, I also take showers in the day if I'm rushing by just standing (albeit a bit precariously) more on one leg and the other sort of held out of the way so as not to get it too wet-a limb won't spontaneously disintegrate if it gets the odd little splash, plus I use a neoprene suspension cuff which helps ;)

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I use a shower leg--I was complaining abou tthe absence of it over in another forum. I really like it--it's much faster than a regular leg to put on so it's handy for those odd spontaneous visits to the loo we all have to make. It lets me travel much more easily--I don't need a "handicapped" bathroom and don't have a lug a shower bench and walker (or crutches) around with me. The way I handle the "can't wash your stump" problem is to keep my stump clean with Handi-Wipes or other pre-moistened wipe, then rinse down with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer gel--there are lots of brands. This has always worked very well for me. As useful as shower legs can be, however, they are a sore spot with insurers. Many don't consider them a medical necessity, so won't pay. You really have to raise hell with them.

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I was very interested to read this posting, thanks for putting it up here, Clint! Being a newbie myself, I am still figuring out my "sequence" too, and wonder if there is an easier way.

I do a similar routine to you, taking it off beside the bed and having crutches nearby for night time visits. When I went thru a spell with an upset stomach I even had to sleep with my liner on, so I could pop on my leg fast if I had to run to the bathroom. NOT real comfortable at night. I like the shrinker sock, although have heard many complain about them. I like it because it feels "contained", and snug. It made it hurt less during post-surgery recovery too, when I would put that on.

My two problems/questions.....when I first wake up and am groggy....I find I have two choices. I can either sit on the edge of the bed and wait a minute for my body/legs to "wake up", then put on the liner/leg OR I can get up right away and just use crutches. I am wondering if this is normal. I found that if I got up and immediatly put on the liner/leg, my leg muscles were just not ready to "go" yet and it was uncomfortable. Lately I have been doing the "waiting it out" thing, easier walking, than crutches, in getting kids off to school. Maybe that will change, once I get more leg muscles back, and I will be able to get out of bed quickly and put my leg on.

Next one....I have used wipes on my liner but felt like they really didnt "scrub" it clean enough....so I still wash it in the sink, with mild soap.....but it is hard to get it rinsed well (which I would guess is important) and not get the outside top rim wet. And it is hard to wash it standing on one leg. (again, weak second leg...) I have found one thing that helped....we have a small vanity/counter next to our sink, just the right height to prop my stump. I can drop the crutches and just have my leg laying up on the counter next to me....

Again, thanks for posting, clint. I look forward to the responses on this posting....just to hear any tips/suggestions the "old timers" have!

Judy

LBK

Utah

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This is my routine and have been doing it this way for about 5 years or so. I have a shower stool and a shower head that I pull down so that way my face doesn't get sprayed with water. I put my leg on in the morning and walk to the bathroom then remove before showering. I used to wear a shower leg for years but my leg never got a good washing so my husband said time for a shower stool and I'm fine with it.

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I use a bathboard like Cazzy. It's just a white metal board that fits to the width of your bath. I wake up, then put on my legs (I am a bilateral amp), walk to the bathroom, then, after brushing my teeth, etc, etc, I sit on the bathboard and take off my legs, then have a shower, using our showerhead.

Clint, I assume you have one leg amputated (checked on your profile but you did not specify).

I have often thought about having a bath, but logistically, I don't think I could manage it as I don't have a 'good leg' and could imagine myself sinking into the bath (literally!) and possibly drowning!!! OK, that's a but far-fetched, but you get the picture! So I've accepted that I probably will never have long, good soak in a tub brimming with bubbles but I prefer a shower anyway. :P :blink:

I'm a bit confused where people have said that they try not to get their stump wet? :blink: Is this just while it's healing? Because mine are definitely healed and I usually give them a good scrub too with a puff thingy.

One thing though, I use the loo just before I go to bed and try to avoid drinking anything a few hours before I sleep. I have almost not made it when I needed the loo in the night before! :blink:

Ahh, the things we have to do, hey??!!! B)

Afet

Bilateral b/k,

London, England

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.........One more thing..........When I had my amputations about 8 months ago now, I was told by my physio to NEVER keep the shrinker on at night, as it can stop blood circulation, which can be very dangerous.

Just thought you should know.

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Bathboard for me too, I hold the shower attachment in my hand and do stand for short periods in the shower when I need to (on a rubber mat)...

I hop to the loo from the bedroom if I'm not wearing my leg...

...and before you all have a go at me for that, it's not far and I've been doing it for twenty years with no ill effects and I can't use crutches because I have a dodgy arm...

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I get up in the morning out my leg on, go to the bathroom, take my leg off and have my shower. I don't use any aids because my right leg is strong anyway after using crutches for 2 years. I used to use a shower seat like when I had a full leg cast which wedged between the bath handles and the other side of the bath. Quite hard to explain exactly how it worked but it was probably the same as some of yours. Now I have a bath mat and just stand up to shower.

Liz x

P.S. Afet- strange about what you said about your shrinker, I was told the complete opposite by my physio! I had to wear my shrinker for quite a few months after my op. day and night apart from when I got my leg when it was just nights. Just different advice from different physios I guess! :D

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Hi,

My routine is waking up - I'm a RBK and I walk on my knees to the bathroom - just across from the bedroom. I use a small wide stool to rest my knee / stump on and stand on my left leg also - to brush teeth etc. I then get downstairs on my bottom step by step and "walk" on my knees to the sofa where I then put on my liner and leg etc. Bathing isn't a problem. I too have a bath board - but rarely use it. I use my stool alongside the bath and have grab handles on the side of the bath to lower myself in and out. Works really well for me and have never slipped or lost balance. The stool is very safe - and the same height as the bath and is very sturdy - does not have individual legs - but metal U shaped supports on all sides. I lower myself off and on as my left leg is very strong and I still have my knee on the right.

I was told NEVER to wear any shrinkers to bed - it can cause problems with circulation.

I wear my leg from about 7.45 am. until about 7.00 pm. after I have bathed the children. I then take it off - wash the liner with an antibacterial scrub and let it dry. In the evening if at home, I just use my wheelchair to get about.

Sue.

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Hi

I am happy that so many people repplied to my question! I am a lbk. I just filled out my profile(didn't know it exsisted :blink: ). It is one of those questions I just kinda felt funny asking. I would like to have a shower leg for vacations and overnight stays. I need to re-ask some questions to my doctor about using a shrinker. It might be one of those things that everyone has differnt opinions about. THanks everyone!

See ya

Clint

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Most of the people who've replied here are BK's and I'm an AK, so mine's a bit of a different perspective... and to make matters worse, I rarely if ever wear a leg.

Simple, really...

-Keep crutches at your side at all times.

-Own a shower chair, board, stool, etc...

If you can't fill any of the above requirements, make sure you're really good at hopping and can balance unaided for a loooong time without getting completely worn out.

That last one applies any time I'm staying away from home and don't have anything but a regular shower to use. The hopping part applies when I break rule number one and leave my crutches farther than I have to go to get to the bathroom... which is more often than I care to admit.

...and as for the shrinkers, I say wear them (or at least a nicely wrapped ace bandage) nightly or even anytime you're not wearing your leg. If it serves no other purpose, it helps with the phantom pain... at least in my case. B)

OK, OK, maybe I'm exaggerating with the 24 hours a day shrinker thing, but I do tend to wear one a lot. I just like the way it feels much better than when I don't wear one and it's not like my stump's going to shrink a heck of a lot more than it already has. Matter of preference, I guess.

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Hi,

I've been a BBk for 21 years. After this happened, I had to move back with my parents. Their house is pretty small & using a wheelchair was inconvenient. I quickly learned how to balance upright on my knees & get around that way. It's been 21 years & whenever I'm not wearing my prosthesis, I put on some knee pads & walk on my knees. Walking this way also made it easier to take care of my boys when they were small. Talk about being on their level. ;)

In the beginning, I used a shower chair, but it was a pain taking it in & out when others wanted to use the shower. Now I throw a small thick rubber, gardening type mat in the bath to kneel on & I shower. I have no problems getting in or out. I suppose I've built my upper body up enough & I'm not heavy so I'm able to lift myself in & out easily.

Does seem like a chore some days just getting dressed. Miss those days when all you had to think about is what outfit to wear. Now it's how many socks, do I have a sore, where's my liner, etc etc etc. :blink: Oh well, there are worse things.

Happy bathing! :D

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Hi

What I do is very similar to Sanicki. When I become a bilateral b/k there were no bathing aids offered. I developed quite good upper body strength and use this to get in and out of the bath/shower. I am fine with the way we have the bathroom set up at home, but it gets interesting when I am away from home!

I always keep the limbs by the bed, but also use my knees quite a bit when I am not wearing the legs, (always did this to get up to the children in the night when they were babies)however this gets more difficult as I get older, and have been advised it is not a good idea. However, as someone else mentioned, I now have a wheelchair at home, but find it difficult to use, it doesn't fit thro. some of the doorways, and is diff. to get around the furniture.

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Hi there! Last June I had reconstructive surgery on my leg - when I returned to have the cast removed there was a shelf in front of me which had cast protectors on it. These are made of heavy vinyl with a rbber ring around the top that fits VERY snug to your leg. I bought one - $30.00 Canadian and tried it over my prosthesis - It works just great - just be sure to have a rubber mat in the tub. It feels so great to stand and have a shower on two legs. :blink:

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Hi, this is very interesting, with some really helpful replys. I myself have a transfer-chair, go into the bathroom on crutches, sit on the hopper and then onto the chair, use my hand held shower attachment, not a problem at all. I've never even thought about sitting in the tub, wouldn't want to take the chance of slipping. :o I personally prefer a shower any day over a bathing, always have, but then, I guess it really doesn't matter, so long as one is taken!! :D

I get up, put my limb on, sometimes the socket is a little tight to get on, so I keep a piece of plastic in my nightstand, like a small bag or something, place it over the residual, then it slips on pretty easily. I always leave my limb in the bedroom at night. I just don't feel comfortable leaving it anywhere else in the house. I guess b/c it's like knowing I've put all of me to sleep in the same room. Where in another room, who knows what could be going on. :lol:

As far as the shrinker, I've never heard of it bothering your circulation, which having a bad circulation problem (vascular) you would have thought, that would have been mention..... hummm will have to check into that one. I prefer having it on anyways, my residual tends to get rather cold with it off.

Sheila, LBK

Maine- USA

Keep Smiling :)

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I was in for major fine tuning yesterday and asked my prosthetist about the shrinker sock. He said he tells all of his patients to wear one. That is pretty consistant with what all the prosthetists I interviewed before my surgery said (in another state). Even in one amp. support group meeting a guy said he had trouble with his stump changing volume so much, some days he couldnt get his socket on at all....someone in the group asked if he was wearing his shrinker sock at night and when he said no, they ALL fussed at him...saying it was the only way to keep the volume changes under control.

Remember, I am a newbie at this, so am just going by what I have heard so far....

My prosthetist did say that if you had vascular problems you had to be VERY careful about how tight the shrinker was, that it was not leaving dents in your leg, or making it turn purple. So maybe the people that are being told that have vascular problems. But even then, he said it would be hard to get consistant fit if you didnt wear one....

I also love mine. Once I got my cast off it felt SO much better when I would put the shrinker sock on...kept a lot of phantom pain away, and felt cozy/contained. And I have never had a problem with not getting my socket on because I had swelled too much overnight...even as a newbie.

Just my two cents!

Judy

Utah

LBK

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I'm an AKA, and still use and love a good soak in the bath.

I use crutches from the bedroom and sit on the side of the bath. I have a bath stool and a bath bench. I have a handrail which I use for support getting in to the bath. I lower myself onto the stool, then lower myself to the bottem of the bath. I release the suction pads on the bath stool and tilt it so it makes a good back rest. When I get out I place the bath stool upright, then using the handrail lift myself up onto the stool then onto the bathbench. Dry myself off sitting on the bathbench and using crutches, back to the bedroom.

After removing my 'leg' I always clean my stump with anti-bacterial 'baby' wipes. And clean the inside of the socket with anti-bacterial nursery wipes.

I tried having a shower sitting on the bathbench, but the water kept ruining my cup of coffee or glass of wine that I place on the bathbench :D

Best as ever

Steve

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Hi,

I have a plastic stool in the bathroom. The bathroom door at home is next to my bed, so it is just a couple of hops to get to the toilet bowl or the stool that I have placed under the shower.

I keep my leg leaning to my bed at night, so that it is ready to wear when I am dressing up after shower as I prepare to go to work every morning.

This sounds funny, but I also keep a peepot next to my bed in case I wake up at night feeling that I have to empty my bladder. Saves me couple of hops to the toilet. I use it every night as I do believe that drinking of plenty of water spares me from phantom feelings. It works for me. Every morning once I have my leg on after shower I empty and clean my peepot.

I have dropped the idea of having a shower leg as I think that I have to take it off anyway to clean my stump. I also believe that the cleanliness of the stump is essential for a healthy skin and avoidance of skin breakdown.

So I keep my stool, it is much cheaper than a shower leg. This is also a question of practicality; I feel my stool is more practical than a shower leg.

If I must travel and stay in hotel rooms I may experience some inconvenience such as distance of hopping to bathroom from the bed may be greater than at home and that there is no stool. Normally hotel rooms have a bathtub, so I take extra care when moving around so as not to slip. And off course I do not have my peepot, but I need to hop to the toilet for my business there.

This is my routine and works well:

1. Evening bedtime:

1a. Undress and take my leg off + place my leg beside my bed.

1b. About three/ four hops to bathroom sink. Soap & rinse my stump in the sink. (I use medicated soap called Dettol). (This is if I skip shower in thev evening).

1c. Hop back to my bed.

1d. Dry the stump, then apply Johnsons Baby Lotion with Aloe Vera on my stump and wear a shrinker sock. Ready to sleep.

2. Morning:

2a. Hop to bathroom, S..T, shower & shave, which require shifting from the toilet bowl to my shower tool and lastly to the sink for shaving. Just two - three hops forth and back. I take good care of washing my stump well and giving it a good rubbing/ massage at the same time.

2b. Dry myself.

2c. Hop back to my bed, dress up, wear my leg and off to work.

My morning ritual takes about an hour from waking up and walking out of my apartment door. I think it is a reasonable timing.

Kind regards,

Jukka

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Sorry, forgot to mention: My wife helps me by giving me my clothing and stump sock every morning. She also washes my stump socks, so I do not need to clean them whilst having my shower.

Jukka

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Ahhh - here's a subject that I can add to:

ED's Bathing Techniques for the BIlateral AKA 101 Lesson I

Scenario:

You want to bath in a real bathtub!!!

Note: for this lesson - assume the tub is next to the toilet as is in many cases.

Prerequisites:

- must be able to move and lift one's body weight by one's self.

- at first, MUST be VERY careful

Procedure:

- ever how, get your butt on the toilet (preferably with the lid down)

- rotate so that you are facing the edge of the tub

- place one hand on the back tank of the toilet, the other on the edge of the tub

- extend your favourite stump so that it is "on" the edge of the tub

- lift yourself and put your weight on the stump and bring your other stump onto the edge

- get your balance point / release the hand from the toilet tank and grab the spout until you feel stable

- lean forward while aiming your strongest forearm to the far edge of the tub until the foreamr is taking most of your weight on the far edge of the tub

- prepare to lower

- "control lower" into the water (WARNING - test the dam water before you do this for temperature otherwise you'll be in hot / cold water before you know it!!!)

Congratulations - you're in!!

Enjoy / do laps 'cause you can!! and FLOAT 'cause its really neet!!

Once finished - you have to get out!!

For me - I do the following:

-turn yourself around so that your butt is in the direction of the tub edge closest to the toilet.

- find places for both hands that will give you a good grip. I use the far closest corner and the closest tub edge.

- prepare to lift.

-lift - at the same time you have to swing your butt onto the tub edge at the peak of the lift

- once on - stabilize yourself

-reach back behind you to find the toilet seat edge with one hand / the other still on the tub edge

-lift and swing your butt onto the toilet seat

( sometimes I use a favourite stump as a mini leg for additional support)

Notes:

-Try this with someone in the house until you are skilled.

- Make sure the someone is somebody you want to see you naked in case you're in trouble!!

- Lift out while there is still water in the tub. It helps ease the lift. Besides, if you don't make it, you'll just land back in the water.

ED

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Eddie,

I don't think there's anything you can't figure out how to do. You are really something! :rolleyes:

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To mmarie:

Thanks but I'm just a putz trying to get by on my own.

I do think that I may be of help to others new to the game.

ED

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