Wednesday, December 29, 2010

wheelchair smoker’s apron

Multiple Sclerosis is a thief. Stealing abilities crushes choices. Whether good, bad, or indifferent – choices are part of quality of life.

I am not a big fan of jackbooted caregiving so I try to find safe paths even when a choice may not be the best.

Smoking is just such a potentially hazardous choice. Beyond the health risks of smoking, there is the clear and present danger from progression of Multiple Sclerosis physical and cognitive symptoms that Patti may drop a lit cigarette or hot ash on herself.

Enter discovery of the smoker’s apron, constructed of flame retardant fabric much like fibers used in fire fighter’s suits. 

While certainly not a substitute for supervision it does improve safety and I do not have to actually sit there and stare at her while she smokes. Win-win scenarios no matter how small or strange are rare in caregiving.

Speaking of thieves, MS is not the only thief out there. Some medical equipment and homecare supply companies sell the identical product, brand, and model for as much as 3X what you can purchase it for through on-line retailers such as

When MS has stolen so much from Patti, if she wants a ‘ciggie’ now and then so be it; if having a ‘ciggie’ can be made safer then even better.

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer 


  1. that is a good thing to have, Patrick! but highway robbery indeed for those companies "jacking" up the price. Always good to be a well-informed shopper, checking out prices. Everything in moderation I say, so if it brings Patti a bit of pleasure, I think it can be a very therapeutic thing indeed.


  2. Patrick, I'm glad Patti is safe with the apron. I agree that medical companies really jack up prices. Two years ago, I was charged a great deal for replacement batteries at the store where I purchased the scooter. I found many online for a fraction of their cost. Thieves is the correct term!

  3. I love your blog, all of your posts are so informative for people with disabilities. I just wanted to share with your reader's another blog I found that helped me when I had questions about my disability.
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