How To Make Wheelchair More Comfortable
Wheelchair is an important equipment which is meant for individuals who find difficulty in walking, such as disabled subjects and seniors. According to research, the human body is not supposed to sit in a particular position for more than a day, which is why one needs all the comfort in the world when using a wheelchair. Thanks to the existence of electricity, rubber, poly-stretch, plastic etc. that have helped wheelchairs to become comfortable.
A little effort is needed to make a wheelchair completely comfortable even with all the advanced accessories we have today. Little adjustments on a wheelchair can make a huge difference. People are not yet aware that small accessories can make a great difference when it involves using wheelchair comfortably and appropriately.
Despite the developments in wheelchairs, comfort is still a major problem, especially for full-time wheelchair users. Luckily, small, easy changes can make a great difference and provide a high level of comfort for elderly ones and those with disabilities.
Your wheelchair is meant to provide mobility, support, and comfort. Most people depend on this single device to make their lives easier in many different ways. It is understandable that wheelchairs are not made to fit all. This implies that you need to customize this device and make adjustments as much as you can to meet your comfort level and suit your needs.
However, before making any permanent adjustments to your device (wheelchair) you should first make sure that such changes meet your taste. Also check to ensure that you can make few permanent changes like custom made seating and more.
Incase these permanent changes will jeopardize the warranty or cause problems with the producer or insurance company, then you can consider temporary fixes. If you are not comfortable in your wheelchair and you have been experiencing back pain, aches, pains, and posture trouble, it is important that you get more comfort. Below are ways to make your wheelchair more comfortable.
1. Cross Your Legs
As a full-time wheelchair user, you probably already know that slight body adjustments can make you feel a lot more comfortable. Crossing your legs is among the most popular adjustments for comfort. It helps in relieving the pressure around your lower back. While this popular sitting position provides so much comfort and relief, it also can result in pressure sores. To avoid pressure sores, switching your legs every few hours is advised.
2. Choose The Right Wheelchair.
Most people buy the first wheelchair they lay their eyes on, or think that every wheelchair is the same. Today, there are different types of wheelchairs that can meet the various needs of your friends and loved one.
Experts have recommended that the measurement of the user’s body is the most important step to take when choosing a wheelchair. This way, you will be sure of getting a wheelchair that provide the right support and comfort you need. Choosing the right wheelchair that suits the body of its user can go a long way to provide comfort.
3. Choose The Right Accessories.
Your loved one will feel more comfortable in a wheelchair if it has the right accessories. Today, there are many different wheelchair accessories that can be attached to a wheelchair, allowing the disabled and elderly ones to have a cup holder, lap pad (for working on), or even storage for handy work or magazines. Also, if you use a special cushion on your wheelchair, there is a wide range of cushion covers which makes them a lot more comfortable. These accessories can make the use of wheelchair more comfortable for elderly and disabled people, and it gives them some advantages even while being on a wheelchair.
4. Use A Cushion
First of all, all wheelchair users need a cushion to make their wheelchairs more comfortable. There are many different forms of cushions available today, one of which is the ROHO. It makes a pillow effect right under the lower back and hips. It feels great and work best for almost all brands of wheelchairs.
5. Lower Back Support
The lower back is vulnerable to stiffness and pain in a wheelchair, especially if you plan on using it for a long period of time. The little space around your lower back curve inwards and if it doesn’t get the needed support, you might start experiencing back pain. To avoid a situation such as this, you can make use of a lumbar support seat. It can make a great difference.
6. Cushioned Arm Support
Most of the wheelchairs come with plastic armrests. If you have a wheelchair such as this, ensure you use a gentle cushioned arm support. That extra cushion that may seem little, can make you feel a lot more comfortable when you plan on being on your wheelchair for a long period of time.
7. Use Proper Footrests
Using an improper footrest on a wheelchair can make you very uncomfortable. Therefore, the solution is to keep your knees slightly higher than your hips i.e. pelvic region. If your knees are placed too high, the pressure in your pelvic region could cause pain to your back. Ensure that you use only proper footrests.
8. Use A Backrest
Trying different backrests to see which best suits you will help you gain more comfort when using a wheelchair. Made up of foamy and spongy cushion, backrests provide the needed support to your back. The more you make use of backrests, the more comforts you will get.
9. Side Supports
If you have bad torso control and balance issues, then you need the lateral side supports. Side supports are very important as they provide you with a higher level of comfort. They help to provide support whenever you lean to the left or right. Support such as this keeps your body in balance without struggling to gain balance.
10. Customized Seating
If none of the wheelchair accessories give you the support you need, then consider the customized seating. The professionals make use of pressure mapping to ensure that your seat and backrest are made according to the shape of your body, adjusting the foam to fit perfectly.
Always invest in those things that keep you comfortable in your wheelchair. It may look a bit too much, but with time, you will appreciate the comfort that comes from your investment.
11. Lumbar Support
Thinking about your lumbar area is important when it has to do with your comfort on a wheelchair. If your lumbar is poorly supported, your whole back will feel like it is giving out. The easiest way of resolving this problem is by using a rolled up towel for better support. Nevertheless, depending on the amount of money you wish to spend, you can buy a cushion attachment or an actual lumbar support seat.
12. Adjust The Footrests
Whether you believe it or you don’t, your footrest plays a major role in the level of comfort you get from a wheelchair. The most important thing to bare in mind is to always keep your knees slightly higher than your hips. When they get too high, your back will be driven to the back corner of the seat, which could result to pain and tension in the back. Always purchase a wheelchair that allows you to adjust the footrests. If you already have a wheelchair without adjustable foot rests, you can always make changes by taking it to a wheelchair repair shop.
13. Recline The Backrest
Most wheelchairs come with a straight back, making it hard to maintain a flexible posture. It usually causes users to lean forward most of the time. Adjust your backrest to allow it recline at any specific degree that supports a healthy posture rather than pushing you forward or forcing you to lean forward.
14. Put On The Right Clothing
It is quite easy to put on comfortable, bulky clothing like coats, thick sweaters, and shirts. Nevertheless, these clothing you think are comfortable can make you feel uncomfortable in your wheelchair. Shirts and sweaters with hoods may push your posture forward, making you feel uncomfortable while sitting on your wheelchair. Avoid clothes that come with hoods and reach for close fitting clothing and a comfortable hat instead.
A loss of mobility is sometimes seen as a loss of independence. It can be quite difficult for you and your loved ones to know that you have no other choice but to use a wheelchair. When walking on your feet is no longer possible, a wheelchair become your best solution. Sitting in a wheelchair all day may seem like an easy thing for most people, but it is actually not a comfortable experience, especially when it concerns long hours.
However, the good news is that you can now be comfortable in your wheelchair. The earlier discussed tips can make your wheelchair a lot more comfortable. Whether you are a concerned family member of an elderly or disabled individual, or a caregiver, the earlier discussed tips can help keep your loved one comfortable.