independence Archives - Lift and Accessibility Solutions

Finding the right wheelchair is like finding the right type of tires for your jeep. There’s so much to consider. The size, the level of support, the tread, the look, the purpose and use. Off-road or highway? Snowy or muddy terrain? So many options!

Let us make the process of finding your next wheelchair a little less stressful with these simple tips!

The Options

There are so many options out there but only three types of wheelchairs:  Manual, Scooters, and Power.

Manual wheelchairs are self propelled meaning they only move if you move them with your arms or someone pushes you. They are typically lightweight and smaller. Most fold up making car transport a simple step.

Scooters tend to be a little more aesthetically pleasing to the eye and a less expensive option. Unfortunately, they are a little more difficult to transport and do not provide proper back support.

Power wheelchairs are more expensive, heavier, and more difficult to transport. They are, however, powered, so there is no manual work required to make them move. Non-manual wheelchairs also come in standing varieties.

Here are few things to consider when deciding what wheelchair is best for you.

Do your research.

Look at reviews from those who have purchased the wheelchairs you are considering. This website lists their top five manual wheelchairs and gives great unbiased information on why they chose these particular models.

Seek out the advice of an occupational therapist.

Having someone in your corner who helps fit clients in wheelchairs for a living can be extremely helpful; just like having an expert at the tire store fit your jeep with snow tires.

Think through your needs and abilities.

Are you able to self propel a wheelchair? Do you have the space in your vehicle for a larger wheelchair or scooter? Would a motorized wheelchair increase your quality of life? We found this video quite helpful in breaking down all the details involved in fitting yourself for a good chair.

Know your budget.

Insurance will only cover so much. Determine what you can spend if what you want, or need, is not provided through your insurance.

Try before you buy.

Once you’ve narrowed it down, rent the prospective wheelchair. See if it’s right for you before you make the purchase. Your doctor can help you find a rental establishment.

Don’t be afraid to return it.

Your wheelchair affects your physical health and your emotional well being. It needs to be a great fit. Be sure to know the return policy for your wheelchair to save yourself some trouble!

Finding the right chair requires a lot of research and consideration. But we are confident you can find the right one for you and your needs!

Many people are deciding to replace their old bathtub showers with barrier-free showers nowadays, and not always for the reasons you might think. When most people think about barrier-free showers, they think of them as being installed for safety concerns, usually for the elderly. While they do provide a great deal of safety and ease, they can also create a stylish, spa-like bathroom.

If you are unfamiliar with the concept, barrier-free showers are walk-in showers that have no curb over which you have to step to get into the shower. They are a great alternative to traditional bathtubs, and more and more people are going that route. Since most people rarely use their bathtubs in the traditional, soaking bath way, many are finding a sleek, safe and easily-accessible alternative in walk-in, barrier-free showers.

Benefits of Barrier-Free

There are many obvious benefits of going barrier-free, but many people are hesitant about getting rid of their bathtub. If you have small children or take baths often, barrier-free would not be for you. However, if you are like many of us who only take showers, you could consider some of these additional benefits of going the walk-in route.

  • Safety: This is one of the primary benefits of barrier-free showers. Without a curb or lip to step over when you get in or out, the risk of falling is greatly reduced.
  • Easily Accessed: Similar to the safety benefit, barrier-free showers are just easier to enter. This may not seem like a big concern for some, but it is a big deal to those in a wheelchair or have other mobility problems. It also comes in handy if you ever twist an ankle or have any other leg injury that hinders your movements.
  • Style: This is the aspect that many people do not realize. Barrier-free showers provide a sleek, European look that will help modernize the entire bathroom.

What to Consider

If you have decided to go barrier-free with your shower, there are a few things to consider before the installation. You need to decide upon the depth of the base, the width of the opening and the type of tile to be used. You also need to consider the texture you want for the tile and a few other small details. Most importantly, make sure to select an installer who is certified and experienced in the installation of them. Unless you are a professional yourself, you will almost certainly overlook some aspect, and a certified professional will be familiar with every step of the process.

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