Choosing the right mobility aid will increase productivity, comfort, and peace of mind. The type of mobility aid you choose depends on how much support you need while walking, whether or not you have significant balance issues, and your upper body strength.
The most common mobility aids are canes, walkers, and rollators. You may also need a wheelchair or scooter.
Consider Your Needs
When it comes to choosing the right mobility aid, you need to take into account a few factors. These include your health, lifestyle, and budget. You also need to know what environment you will use your mobility aid in, affecting your decision.
When selecting an aid, consider where you will be using it. If it’s mainly indoors, choose a device that is easy to maneuver and can fit through narrow doorways, like the Golden brand. However, if you plan to use it outdoors, opt for a sturdier device that can handle different terrains.
Another factor to consider is your level of mobility, as different mobility aids are designed for varying levels of physical limitation. Finally, you should also consider your budget, as prices vary significantly between products. It would help if you tried to find a mobility aid that is affordable for you and will be able to accommodate your needs as they change over time.
Consult a Healthcare Professional
A therapist or healthcare professional is the best person to help you select mobility equipment. They can assess your health, walking ability, and balance level, as well as your lifestyle, environment, and weight requirements, to determine which device is suitable.
Canes: Those with minor walking difficulties can benefit from canes that offer support and relieve joint pressure.
Rollator: A rollator offers more balance than a cane for those with moderate walking difficulties.
Walkers: Those with more severe walking issues should use a wheel walker.
Transport chairs: For those who can’t walk or tire easily, a transport chair is a convenient option for errands and travel. Check to see if its width fits through passageways and that the seat and back measurements are comfortable for the user.
Many seniors receive government or private insurance funding to purchase mobility aids, so it’s important to ask about available options in your area. A therapist can also help you navigate the paperwork involved with obtaining funding.
Check Your Budget
Mobility equipment can make a significant difference in the life of a person with disabilities. It can help them regain their independence and boost their morale. But the devices can be costly, so choosing the right one that fits the individual’s budget is important.
For instance, well-meaning family and friends may buy a cane or walker for their loved ones without knowing that the equipment isn’t ideal for someone with balance problems. Choosing the wrong mobility aid can lead to unstable walking patterns and posture issues, which can cause further discomfort.
To avoid making such mistakes, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional when choosing the right mobility equipment for your needs. They can comprehensively assess and recommend the best equipment to suit your condition. If you cannot afford the cost of mobility equipment, you can explore financial assistance options such as Medicare or private insurance.
Consider Your Lifestyle
The type of mobility aid best suited to a patient’s needs depends on their walking stability, balance level, and other factors such as how active they are. Canes are ideal for people who require a counterbalance on one side of the body, while walkers and rollators offer greater walking support and are more comfortable for those with a balance issue.
A therapist or healthcare professional can help patients choose the best mobility equipment for their lifestyle. This will include assessing the user’s current health and fitness levels, their regularly visited environments, and any limitations caused by their medical conditions or surgery.
For example, investing in a stair lift or ramp may be necessary if their home has stairs. It’s also important to consider if their mobility needs will change over time and whether or not the equipment they purchase is adaptable.