How to Pick Holiday Gifts for Handicapped Individuals

Holiday gift-giving can be a difficult task, but it can be even more problematic when you are shopping for items that will be both useful and enjoyable for those who have special needs. Physically and mentally handicapped people love receiving holiday gifts just as much as everybody else, but it's important that you know what criteria to use to help you find items that can improve the quality of their lives in some manner.

Make sure that any clothing items you are considering buying as a gift for a handicapped person are adaptable. If an individual has certain physical limitations, such as being confined to a wheelchair or bed, she cannot easily maneuver herself to put on clothes, so giving her attractive clothes that make it simple for her to dress is both practical and considerate.

Consider giving gifts that can assist those with mobility issues in being able to perform normal, everyday tasks. Routines that we take for granted can be challenging for disabled people. Look for gifts such as drinking and eating aids, kitchen items that can easily be gripped, easy-grip scissors, long-handled shoehorns, reaching tools, easy-to-grip grooming tools, transfer chairs and other bathroom safety items, seat lifters, wheelchair ramps and the like. Handicapped people want to be as independent as possible, and giving them a gift that will enable them to accomplish this will be much appreciated.

Find gifts that will add to the comfort of a handicapped loved one, such as accessories for a wheelchair, scooter or bed. Items such as cushions and pads for a wheelchair, extra-fluffy pillows, massagers, foot rests and products that offer pressure relief can help a disabled person feel more relaxed, at ease and secure.

Think about getting adaptable toys as gifts for handicapped children. Many toy manufacturers offer a selection of toys, such as puzzles, plush toys, dolls, blocks and rhythm instruments, that can be easily handled by handicapped kids. Call stores to find out what merchandise they have available that is geared towards the needs and limitations of the disabled (see Resources below).

Look for games that are adaptable. Examples of this are playing cards in Braille or large print, and board games and educational games for those who have learning disabilities. You can locate items like this at stores that specialize in merchandise for the handicapped (see Resources below).