Last updated: June 2023
Myasthenia gravis (MG) causes some of us to feel fatigued all or most of the time. So how do we manage our daily hygiene and getting dressed for the day? Many of us still work, and even if we don’t, we still have to maintain our own hygiene and prepare for the day ahead.
Starting the day
In order to catch my breath once I’m out of the shower, I sit and rest. While I’m resting, I’ve dried my arms and wrapped the towel around me to warm myself and dry.
Once dressed, I start working on my hair. I have a husband that can assist me, if and when I need help. However, not everyone is that fortunate, so I have some suggestions that may help you be or remain more independent.
Help getting dressed
There are several products to assist in getting dressed. You can find many of these products online or through medical supply companies that sell products for daily living.
Sock aids - Aids or helpers have handles to help the user to put on socks without assistance. It’s a 1 or 2-handed product. It can also be used for donning compression stockings. Other stocking aids are made up sturdy steel, many with a coating. The sock is stretched over the column so the foot can just slip into the sock. As with most products, there are several designs to choose from.
Shoe aids - There are a variety of styles of shoe aids depending on your preferences and needs. It acts like a shoehorn or can be another function of some dressing aids.
Dressing aid - This aid has a smooth surface with round edges. Some are S-shaped and will double as an aid for donning shoes, a shirt, dress, jacket, and more.
Zipper-pull and button aids - These products will help those that have limited use of their hands and fingers.
Pant clips - In my opinion, these resemble suspenders. They clip to the waistband and there’s an extra strap in which to pull the pants on. It can also attach to a shirt, which holds the pants up while you stand.
If you have minor problems with dressing, but do not need dressing aids, you may consider these products. You can also find these online or through an adaptive clothing company such as Silverts.
Instead of buying shoes you have to tie, consider slip-ons or Velcro closures. You may even want to consider non-slip shoes and slippers. There are also elastic laced shoes available.
Get socks that aren’t tight-fitting. I’d get something snug but be careful getting any type of clothing or shoes that are very tight or difficult to don. Make sure your shoes are lightweight, comfortable, and don’t interfere with your balance.1
Different fabrics and closures
Sometimes, zippers and buttons can be difficult. Consider wearing clothing without them. Instead, try tops or dresses that slip on. There are also jeans, trousers, or pants that have elastic in the waist or fasten with Velcro. If you are self-conscious of the elastic, find those with elastic only in the back and you could possibly wear a belt with it. To reduce stress, dress in stages and prepare everything the night before.
Instead of something that needs to be ironed, consider a mix of fabrics. Look for those products that state wrinkle-free. Also, think about the season and how you tolerate the climate where you live or travel. Look for clothing, including night clothes and underwear, that is easy to get on and off. You can always find ways to make life easier and still be fashionable!
How often do you experience MG exacerbations/flares?