You folks well know how excited we are at Regency Nursing Centers whenever we hear about technological advancements in the world of Senior Healthcare.
Well then, consider this:
Eating a bowl of cereal in the morning seems like such a simple thing, but it’s close to impossible for some of the 1 million Americans who struggle with the tremors of Parkinson’s disease.
I’ve read that there are also as many as 10 million Americans who have a disorder called essential tremor — sometimes mistaken for Parkinson’s — which, when severe, also can make eating a struggle.
Folks who suffer from this disease experience tremors so strong that the cereal bounces right out of their spoons and back into the bowl.
This is the problem that engineer Anupam Pathak wanted to solve. He looked to develop a spoon that would cancel out its effects. He calls the spoon Liftware.
There’s no on switch; the spoon starts up automatically when it’s lifted from the table. The chunky handle vibrates a little in the user’s hand.
“There’s a little motion sensor right near the spoon,” Pathak explains. “If I had tremor, it’s going to move opposite to what the shaking is doing. So, if I move to the left, it’ll physically move the spoon to the right.”
And that cancels out the tremor as the spoon moves from plate to mouth. In a clinical trial, the Liftware spoon canceled out more than 70 percent of a user’s tremor.
The video of how this works, is even more amazing!
I’ve embedded it here. Check it out below:
The Liftware spoon has been available since this past December. It costs $300 and, as yet, is not covered by Medicare or private insurance. Some Veteran’s Administration medical centers will cover the cost.
New attachments for the device are being developed. A fork and soup spoon should be available by the end of June.