If you’re a wheelchair user, a standard model may have served you well for many years, and you have no reason to expect that it won’t continue to. Sometimes, however, a medical condition can worsen over time. If you’re older, for example, your arms may have become weaker, or you may have developed a repetitive motion injury. Polio and multiple sclerosis symptoms can also worsen over the years.
You may be faced with the reality that you can’t get around as easily in a standard chair as you once did. The switch to a power chair might seem demoralizing at first, but this new easier-to-use model can actually open horizons, allowing you to move more freely and accomplish much more than you could when you were working hard to get around. With that in mind it is time to look into purchasing a mobility scooter or power wheelchair.
Once you’re aware of the advantages of a power chair, you’ll have the job of finding the one that’s right for you. Although it’s always a good idea to gather as much information as you can yourself, you can rely on the advice of your doctor — who will write the prescription — your physical therapist and your vendor. Their advice will go a long way toward ensuring that you wind up with the power chair that meets your needs. Among the considerations that you should keep in mind:
- Front, center or rear-wheel drive: Rear-wheel drive chairs offer optimum stability but aren’t well suited to hilly terrain. Front-wheel drive chairs are stable on uneven surfaces but generally slower than rear-wheel drive chairs. Mid-wheel-drive chairs offer maximum maneuverability in tight spaces, such as grocery stores, classrooms and hallways and kitchens at home.
- Seating options: Although you may be fine with a standard captain’s seat, you may need something that’s better suited to your needs. Tilt and reclining seats offer relief from pressure sores and improve sitting balance. A lift seat and frame can elevate you to a standing position that could assist your circulation, respiration, digestion and bladder function.
- Controls: In addition to the standard joystick, your options include chin control, mouth control and head control.
Your vendor can explain other features, from suspension systems to color options. Your vendor can also guide you through the process of securing Medicare or Medicaid coverage. Choosing the right supplier, therefore, is just as important as choosing the right chair. Headquartered in Phoenix, Power Mobility and Lifts serves wheelchair users throughout Arizona. We can help you select your new chair, and we’re pleased to answer any of your questions. Whether you are interested in a powerchair, standard mobility scooter, portable travel scooter, folding scooter, or need a heavy duty mobility scooter…Give us a call.