As we grow older, there’s a good chance we’ll be afflicted with a condition that can make standing, walking or climbing steps difficult. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 40 percent of seniors over age 65 have at least one disability that affects their overall mobility.
For many active seniors ready to take advantage of the freedom that comes with retirement, a physical disability may be the one thing that holds them back from living the life they want. However, by taking advantage of the range of mobility devices and solutions available, older adults can reclaim their independence to travel, enjoy their favorite hobbies, and enjoy time with friends and family free of limitations.
If you or a loved one is grappling with a crippling condition, here are six solutions that can help:
- Rollators – Compared to traditional walkers, rolling walkers come with three or four wheels instead of two for a smoother push across any surface. A brake system offers greater control while the padded seat provides a comfortable place to rest once your loved one arrives at their destination.
- Power wheelchairs – Offering sleek designs and intuitive joystick controls, today’s power wheelchairs can be used both indoors and outdoors and on almost any kind of surface. They’re also ergonomically designed to reduce pain and fatigue as well as align the patient’s posture. These motorized devices are best if your loved one requires mobility assistance around the clock.
- Motorized scooters – If your loved one only needs help walking long distances, a mobility scooter may be a better option. Ideal for outdoor use or in open areas, like a grocery store or mall, scooters offer full radial steering to maneuver through tight spaces, but are still rugged enough to handle almost any terrain.
- Ceiling lifts – Trying to get out of bed is not only painful for patients, but can be problematic for caregivers as well. Fifty-two percent of caregivers complain of back pain due to caring for patients. A stationary lifting system uses a motor-driven sling to gently and ergonomically transport a senior from their bed to their wheelchair.
- Stairlifts – Navigating staircases can be particularly difficult, but when one’s bedroom is on the second floor, they have to find a way to get upstairs. A quality motorized stairlift can comfortably transport your loved one from floor to floor with one push of a button and zero abrupt stops. Many models can be adapted to straight or curved staircase, complement any décor and are narrow enough not to obstruct the staircase for others.
- Power lift chairs – One of the biggest fall risks for the elderly is getting in and out of a chair. A power chair or other assistive seating device safely and gently lifts a senior to a standing position to protect their balance and put less stress on their joints.
Choosing the best mobility device for your loved one’s needs
If the senior in your life is currently receiving services from AccuCare Home Health Care of St. Louis, their caregiver can help discuss their needs, the limitations of their home, the challenges they face once they head out the door, and their current health status. To learn more about aligning a mobility plan with your loved one’s recovery plan, contact the experts at AccuCare today.