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Choosing the Right Mobility Aid

A variety of illnesses or injuries can result in the need for a senior to use a wheelchair or other mobility aid. Some may need to use them for only a short time, while others may have to adapt to using them on a daily basis, making it important to find the right kind of mobility aid to suit your elderly loved one’s needs. The staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of at-home care in Kitchener, has some information to share about a few different mobility aids and who should be using each type.

Lightweight Wheelchairs

Lightweight wheelchairs are meant for seniors who have the strength to propel them, but who also want the option of having someone else push them for longer distances. In contrast to a transport wheelchair with four small wheels, a lightweight wheelchair has two small wheels in front and two large wheels in back, making it easier to self-propel. Lightweight wheelchairs can be used as the sole means of mobility or in conjunction with other aids like walkers or canes.

Reclining Wheelchairs

Reclining wheelchairs are an excellent choice for seniors who have had a stroke or who are otherwise unable to sit comfortably in a standard wheelchair. They have a higher backrest that can tilt backward, which provides comfort and can help reduce the risk of pressure ulcers for seniors who are in the chair or in bed for a large part of the day.

Motorized Wheelchairs

Motorized wheelchairs are intended for seniors who lack the coordination, strength, balance, or endurance to use standard wheelchairs or other types of mobility aids. Most motorized wheelchairs are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. However, seniors with cognitive difficulties, poor judgment, and lack of safety awareness should not use motorized wheelchairs because they pose a risk to themselves and others.

Scooters

Scooters are designed for seniors with decreased endurance, balance, and strength. Unlike motorized wheelchairs, they are not intended for full-time use. They can help seniors maintain independence by allowing them to go to the mailbox, visit neighbors, or even go to the grocery store by themselves. Scooters are not suitable for seniors with cognitive issues, poor eyesight and hearing, seizure disorders, or who otherwise cannot operate the scooter safely.

Even with the help of a mobility aid, living independently may be challenging for your loved one. Home Care Assistance is here to help make his or her daily life easier. For instance, if your loved one needs stroke or Parkinson’s care in Kitchener, our live-in and part-time caregivers can assist with mobility, exercise, and many other important daily tasks. For more information on how our in-home care services can promote your loved one’s quality of life, call one of our experienced Care Managers today at (519) 954-2111 to schedule a free consultation.