When the society ages and people live longer, the use of wheelchairs becomes inevitable at a larger scale. This useful mobility device is meant to provide the user with a great deal of comfort, independence, and capability to live life to the fullest despite the physical limitations. It takes out of the equation the dependency on others to move around.
The use of a wheelchair is normally easy most of the time. However, there might come times when things become a bit awry but these can be tackled with a proactive approach. Therefore, a lot of emphases should be put in the safety aspects of the wheelchair.
When used carefully, a wheelchair is mighty effective and crucial to helping people with mobility issues. For patients who find it difficult to move by themselves, wheelchairs can help nurses and caregivers to safely move them from one place to another.
Top Safety Tips for Wheelchair Users
Following wheelchair safety tips are vital if you want to get the most out of the equipment.
1. The Center of Gravity
All scientific it may sound, but when you are using a wheelchair for the first time, you need to be quite familiar with the center of gravity. It is immensely important to find your proper position when you are handling the wheelchair. Initially, you can look casters in a bid to help maintain your balance. It is advisable to practice a wide variety of activities which mainly includes reaching, bending, and transferring. These movements help in distributing the weight in the chair. It is best to practice with all the movement, this continuous practice will give you loads of confidence.
2. Stairlifts & Wheelchairs
One of the key reasons why old age people move to healthcare is because they can no longer move in their homes with a lot of ease even when they are using wheelchairs. One of the changes you can easily undergo is the installation of stairlifts for wheelchairs at your residence. This makes it substantially easy to move from one floor to another. Stairlifts for wheelchairs are designed in such an excellent manner, which assists them in sensing or detecting objects that may well be on their path. Consequently, they save their riders from hitting any obstacle along the way. It is a mechanism designed specifically to prevent collisions.
3. Use the Wheelchair Brakes When Necessary
Most manual wheelchairs come with brakes that you can easily apply when the chair is not in motion. The wheelchair handler should not hesitate in using these brakes not just when the patient is in the chair, but also when they are transferring the patient from chair to bed, bath, or vice versa. If you are looking to give the person on the chair the freedom to lock and unlock the wheelchair themselves, then you can always use the option of using brake extensions in order to make it easier for them to manage their motion.
4. Backward Bending
When you’re looking to reach for something by bending backward, you should position your wheelchair as close to the intended objective as possible. It is a good idea to use the casters so they easily extend away from the drive wheels to form a long wheelbase. You must reach back as much as your arms extend without changing the position you are sitting in. It is strongly recommended not to bend your wheelchair backward as it tilts the chair and you may end up falling.
5. Forward Bending
It is highly imperative for you to understand that you should never attempt to reach for an object if it means positioning yourself forward on the seat of your wheelchair. This can turn out to be really dangerous. The better option is to position the casters and extend them away from the drive wheels, and then you should engage the wheel locks before reaching forward in direction of the intended object.
For many of the individuals, being restricted to a wheelchair wasn’t their life plan. But due to an unexpected tragedy, disease, or aging years, people find themselves confined into a world that they had never known before. Wheelchair users face several challenges, the most notable of which is the extent of mobility. Following the above-mentioned safety tips can be of real benefit to the wheelchair users and keep them from facing the hazards of unexpected accidents.