It may appear that sitting all day or being pushed around is a comfortable position to be in, but that it not entirely the truth. Sitting for long periods of time can cause serious problems with circulation and may eventually cause damage to the skin. Persons confined to a wheelchair are already facing many obstacles in their daily lives and being uncomfortable in their only means of mobility should not be one of them. Caregivers or family members of the injured or debilitated person can take precautions and make good choices that will make things better for their patient or loved one.
Clothing Choices Can Make a Difference
Bulky clothing can be cumbersome and make even the smallest movements harder for the person bound to the chair. Be aware that zippers, large buttons, elastic that is too tight, or even a wrongly fitted belt can cause problems. These items on clothing can put pressure on the skin and rub causing painful pressure ulcers (bed sores). When choosing clothing for them; keep it simple; like pull on clothing that doesn’t require a zipper or buttons. If it is the cooler part of the year consider purchasing a poncho over a bulky coat to allow for less restriction on movement. Using items with Velcro closures is another option that can be considered. There are new items in the market that keep your loved one stylish and comfortable.
Support is Important
There are options available to make the time spent in a wheelchair more comfortable that can make a world of difference. Having the correct foot support is a major issue to keep the circulation in the legs flowing. Improper circulation in the legs can cause pain, numbness, cold toes, spasms, knee pain, and extended time to heal injuries. Finding the right cushion for the wheelchair can also be very beneficial in giving comfort. The extra padding can help to prevent pressure ulcers on the buttocks of persons having to be in the wheelchair for hours at a time. With a little investment of time caregivers can find specialized cushions that are designed to defuse heat and vapors away from the body; which can help keep the disabled comfortable on warmer days. Cushions with a stay cool gel feature are also available to aid in keeping cool. To add a bit of their personality; let the confined person can choose a custom cushion cover that can be removed for easy cleaning.
Choosing Wheelchair Accessories
In this day and age there are numerous accessories available to those limited to mobility by wheelchair. When considering the right accessories for your loved one think about their needs, interests, habits, and limits. For those that can function somewhat independently and like to do their own shopping consider an attachable basket. With limited movement most people have to eat from the confines of their chair and a tray may be a good accessory. These trays are specially designed to hold their meal and have an insert for drinks to fight against spillage. The tray can also serve as a makeshift lap tray for writing, crossword puzzles, or using a laptop. Most importantly above all else choose the wheelchair that is best suited for the person you care for. Take notice of the person’s measurements and body type; choosing a chair that is too big or too small may make them uncomfortable and take away some of their independence. Choosing a wheelchair that is too small for a larger person could have possible safety issues and a chair to big will not give the needed support.
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Donna Jane has worked in the care and comfort industry all her life. Caring to disabled and aged. Now she runs an online store to assist other such organizations care for people better.
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