Do you know what activities of daily living are? Do you know the difference between basic and instrumental activities of daily living? Do you know how to improve ADLs? In today’s post, we explain what ADLs are, their classification, and also recommend several exercises for improving them.

What are activities of daily living?

ADLs are all those tasks of everyday life which have a specific value and meaning to individuals, as well as purpose.

Occupations are central to a person’s identity and competence, and they influence how one spends time and makes decisions.

 How are activities of daily living classified?

ADLs are divided into the following categories:

  1. Basic Activities of Daily Living :

(BADLs) are activities oriented toward taking care of one’s own body.

Basic activities of daily living include:
  • Bathing / showering
  • Bowel and bladder management
  • Dressing
  • Eating
  • Feeding
  • Functional mobility
  • Personal device care
  • Personal hygiene and grooming
  • Sexual activity
  • Sleep / rest
  • Toilet hygiene

    2. Instrumental Activities of Daily Living:

IADLs are activities oriented toward interacting with the environment; they are often complex, and they are generally optional in nature since they may be delegated to another.

Instrumental activities of daily living include:
  • Care of others (including selecting and supervising caregivers)
  • Care of pets
  • Child rearing
  • Communication device use
  • Community mobility
  • Financial management
  • Health management and maintenance
  • Home establishment and management
  • Meal preparation and cleanup
  • Safety procedures and emergency responses
  • Shopping

3. Education

Activities needed for being a student and participating in a learning environment.

  • Formal educational participation
  • Exploration of informal personal educational needs or interests
  • Informal personal education participation

4. Work

Activities needed for engaging in remunerative employment or volunteer activities.

  • Employment interests and pursuits
  • Seeking and acquisition
  • Job performance
  • Retirement preparation and adjustment
  • Volunteer exploration
  • Volunteer participation

5. Play

Any spontaneous or organized activity that provides enjoyment, entertainment, amusement, or diversion.

  • Play exploration
  • Play participation

6. Leisure

Nonobligatory activities that are intrinsically motivated and engaged in during discretionary time, that is, time not committed to obligatory occupations such as work, self-care, or sleep.

  • Leisure exploration
  • Leisure participation

7. Social Participation

Activities associated with organized patterns of behavior that are characteristic and expected of an individual or an individual interacting with others within a given social system.

  • Community
  • Family
  • Peers / friends

How can activities of daily living be improved?

Next, we introduce several exercises developed by NeuronUP for improving basic and instrumental activities of daily living.

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