The very elderly and stroke-disabled often have difficulty in using a ball-point pen or pencil. On one of my visits to a nursing home last week to help out a friend I brought her packages of "sharpies" in many colors, and a bristol-board pad upon which to draw. Bright purple, red, green, blue and many pastel shades in between. I prefer the fine points. She has trouble sharpening a pencil or using a ball-point pen, but delights in using the markers. Because she has a tendency to leave the caps off I purchase them in six-packs. These will bleed through ordinary paper, however bristol-board pads are available that will not bleed through. I have used these markers with severely damaged stroke patients, who cannot hold a pen or pencil wil sufficient pressure against paper to make a mark. They come on both non-toxic and toxic varieties. The non-toxic have a water-based solvent, which unfortunately, does not make as bold a mark, mark as easily or is indelible,so I prefer the ordinary versions.
On the other hand, if the person does slip and make a mark on themselves with the water based variety, it will wash off. I've learned this from my grandson who delights in drawing on himself more than paper.
I thought I had heard of special grips that can be added to pens and pencils that aid a person in holding them. Would these be needed for felt pens as well?
There are grips available, but if one can't find them, pink foam rollers work too. Just take out the curler clip and slip the pencil/pen into the foam. Additionally, a light weight that attaches with velcro (like ankle weights for work outs) around the wrist can give a little bit of positive pressure enabling a person to steady the hand a little better.
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