Choosing a Wheelchair Is Not Easy: Here’s What Patients Need To Know

Choosing a wheelchair is not easy, but it’s also one of the most important purchases you can make. Wheelchairs are expensive and usually require investments in rehab, so making the right choice early on improves your chances of getting your money’s worth. Here is how.

1. What Should You Do First?

First, it is very important not to rush out and buy the wheelchair that looks best. It is important to get help from a therapist, either in person or by phone. Some communities have “wheelchair clinics” where you can go see therapists working together on fitting people with chairs. There are also websites for wheelchair fitters where you can find a therapist or wheelchair fitter in your area.

2. How Much Mobility Do You Need?

Choosing a Wheelchair Is Not Easy: Here's What Patients Need To Know

You may have to make do with a less-capable wheelchair if your mobility needs are limited. This is the case for many home users and even some rehab patients, and it’s also true for people who want a chair that isn’t particularly agile or whose small size makes switching between chairs impractical. There is also a lightweight wheelchair made of carbon fibre and aluminium that has become popular among travellers because it folds and fits in a suitcase. Some people may need a lighter chair due to weight-bearing issues, though it’s important to make sure the lighter frame can support you before buying.

3. How Are Your Shoulders And Balance?

Once you have decided what kind of chair best suits your mobility requirements, look at how far forward or back the wheels are placed relative to where you want them. You want whatever position makes the most sense in terms of your ability to move/balance yourself properly without struggling too hard against the chair’s own resistance. If you have good upper body strength, you may be able to move the chair well enough on your own. If you don’t, consider how easily (and with what force) someone else could move the chair for you.

4. What Kind Of Terrain Will You Be Apending The Most Time On?

Choosing a Wheelchair Is Not Easy: Here's What Patients Need To Know

Some chairs are better for smooth surfaces, while others do well on rough terrain. If you spend most of your time on smooth surfaces, such as in an office or shopping mall, then a chair that’s more suited to rougher conditions won’t be used as often and may not be worth the investment. However, if you go out regularly, consider investing in a model good for both indoors and outdoors. If someone will be pushing you frequently (such as at home), make sure they read what kind of surface you need it to push on. The last thing anyone wants is for their wheelchair wheels to get stuck because they weren’t properly prepared ahead of time.

5. How Much Help And Durability Do You Expect?

If you plan on handling the day-to-day use of your wheelchair on your own, consider a model with very few adjustments. If it’s easy to move when you are in the chair, it will also be easy when you are not. If you expect or plan on having help getting around in general, look for models that have more moving parts and adjustability, so they can adapt to different needs with relative ease.

Most wheelchairs are intended to last around four years. However, things like accidents and location can impact how long your wheelchair lasts. If you live somewhere that is more difficult on equipment or spend your time in an occupation where it takes a lot of abuse (such as construction), gets more life out of it by investing in more durable materials for everything from seat cushions to armrests. This will improve comfort but also extend the lifespan of the chair, so it works properly until its replacement arrives.

Why Should Every Patient Have A Wheelchair That Suits Them Perfectly?

Choosing a Wheelchair Is Not Easy: Here's What Patients Need To Know

The patient has to be comfortable in the wheelchair they are using for their daily life. It is important that the patients know what kind of wheelchair is best suited for their lifestyle. The patient has to consider its mobility, weight capacity, what kind of terrain they are spending the most time on, and the customer support. Having the right wheelchair will make their life easier, and they will be able to do their daily activities without too much of a problem.

This article takes a look at five tips every patient should consider when looking for a wheelchair. Being proactive helps ensure that everyone gets the best experience possible in their standards when choosing a chair that fits them perfectly. There are different kinds of chairs for every type of person, so if you need one, don’t give up until you have found the best one for you.

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