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9 Tips for Dressing Someone with Limited Mobility

woman in wheelchair with carer

Helping someone with limited mobility in dressing can be challenging, but with the right approach and techniques, it can be made easier for both the carer and the person being cared for. Here are 9 tips to make the process easier.

9 Tips for Dressing Someone with Limited Mobility

Preparation and Environment:

  • Ensure the room is warm enough to prevent them from getting cold, especially if they need to be partially undressed.

  • Organise clothing beforehand. Lay out clothes in the order they will be put on.

Choosing the Right Clothing:

  • Opt for loose-fitting, comfortable clothes that are easy to put on and take off. Clothes with Velcro, snap buttons, or large zippers are often easier to handle than traditional buttons and small zippers.

  • Consider adaptive clothing designed for people with limited mobility, which often includes features like open-back tops and side-opening pants.

Communication and Respect:

  • Always communicate what you are going to do next and ensure that the person is comfortable with each step.

  • Respect their privacy and dignity. Cover them as much as possible, exposing only the part of the body that is being currently dressed or undressed.

Dressing Technique:

  • Start with the most challenging part of the body first, which is usually the weaker or more painful side.

  • When putting clothes on, gather the clothing into a ring shape so that you can easily slide it over their hands or feet and up their arms or legs.

  • For tops, start by putting the weaker arm through first, then the stronger arm. For pants, start with the weaker leg, then the stronger leg.

  • When undressing, do the reverse. Remove clothing from the stronger side first, followed by the weaker side.

Sitting or Lying Down:

  • If the person can sit, have them sit on a chair or the edge of the bed while dressing. This can make it easier to put on pants, socks, and shoes.

  • If they need to be dressed while lying down, gently roll them from side to side to position the clothes properly.


  • Choose shoes that are easy to put on and take off, such as slip-ons, wide fitting shoes or shoes with Velcro straps.

  • If needed, use a long-handled shoe horn to help with putting shoes on.

Encourage Independence:

  • Encourage them to do as much as they can on their own, even if it takes longer. This promotes their independence and dignity.

Safety Considerations:

  • Ensure there are no tripping hazards like loose rugs or cords.

  • Use a non-slip mat if they are dressing while standing.

Patience and Empathy:

  • Be patient and empathetic. Understand that this process can be frustrating and even embarrassing for them.

Seek Professional Advice:

  • If you're unsure about any aspect of care, don't hesitate to seek advice from a healthcare professional.

Types of Adaptive Clothing Suitable for Mobility Challenges

Magnetic Closure Shirts

No need to fumble with buttons. Shirts with magnetic closures snap together effortlessly, making them a breeze to put on and take off with one hand.

Velcro Closures

Clothes with Velcro closures instead of buttons or zippers can be much easier to handle. This is especially helpful for individuals who have difficulty with fine motor skills.

Loose-fitting Shirts and Tops

Shirts that are loose and have larger neck openings are easier to put on and take off. Avoid tight-fitting sleeves and opt for wider, more comfortable cuts.

Font Opening Shirts and Dresses

Clothing that opens in the front, like button-down shirts or front-opening dresses, can be easier to manage, especially for those who must be dressed while seated or lying down.

Elastic Waist Pants

Pants with an elastic waist are easier to pull on and off. They provide flexibility, comfort, and can accommodate fluctuations in weight.

Slip On and Wide-Fitting Shoes

Footwear that doesn't require tying laces, like slip-on shoes or shoes with Velcro straps, is ideal. Ensure they are non-slip and provide good support.

Seamless Socks and Undergarments

Seamless socks and undergarments can prevent skin irritation. Look for options with a soft, stretchy material that is gentle on the skin.

We're here to provide you with the right adaptive clothing to make dressing easier.

Contact us today to explore our range of adaptive clothing options tailored for mobility challenges.

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Disclaimer: The content provided in this blog is for informational, educational, and entertainment purposes only. We are not medical professionals and the information should not be considered as professional medical advice. Always consult with a qualified healthcare provider for medical advice and treatment.

Affiliate Disclaimer: Some of the links in this blog are affiliate links, which means we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase through these links. We recommend products and services because we believe they are of value to our readers, not because of the commissions we may earn.


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