Pediatric Wheelchairs: Solving Mobility Issues for Children and Teens
Pediatric wheelchairs are specially designed for children and teens, and make it possible for them to enjoy more mobility at home, school and recreational activities. Here's what you should know.
For the physically disabled child, the most challenging aspect of daily life is having the ability to perform the every day tasks that are necessary to live as normally as
possible. The most important part in completing the tasks is having
the mobility needed. Pediatric wheelchairs for children can provide
mobility assistance to the disabled, while also assisting the parent
or caregiver in providing better daily care.
What are Pediatric Wheelchairs?
Pediatric wheelchairs are mobility aids that make it possible for
physically disabled children of all ages to enjoy more mobility
in or outside of the house, with less assistance from others.
There are different types of wheelchairs for kids, depending on the
needed application, size and comfort level.
Types and Features
- Manual pediatric wheelchairs: Manual wheelchairs are the most common style of wheelchair, which must be pushed along. This chair is a good choice if a caretaker is available to help move the patient around, but it can be rolled manually by the patient if the hands and arms aren't injured. Manual wheelchairs can be folded up, so space won't be a problem and the weight is generally around 30 pounds, but there are lighter versions available. There are many versions of manual chairs, such as transport wheelchairs, shower wheelchairs and wheelchair commodes. In fact, you need more than one version for different functions, especially around the house.
- Powered Wheelchairs for Children: Electric power chairs are just like manual wheelchairs, but the main difference is that they are designed to operate with battery-powered, electric controls for movement. Everything from speed to steering is taken care of through the operation of a joy stick. As with the manual versions, there are several power chairs that may be appropriate for some children or teens, such as standing wheelchairs. Upgraded features can be found in a very cool version of an electric mobility scooter.
Advantages for the Disabled
The most important advantage that disabled children will find in using pediatric wheelchairs is personal freedom they experience by using a custom fit, specialized pediatric mobility aid. These chairs make it possible to be involved in school and recreational events, as well as in every day activities at home. This type of handicap aid is adapted specifically for children in regards to their smaller size and special needs.
Disadvantages and Problems
One of the main disadvantages of owning any type of pediatric wheelchair is the necessary fact that you will need to replace the chair as your child grows. Even though many chairs are made to accommodate a growing child for several years, it is usually necessary to upgrade the size and functionality for your child at some point.
The cost involved in these upgrades can be expensive, even though necessary. Of course, the cost difference among various pediatric chairs will be reflected in the available features, and in whether it is a power or manual wheelchair.
Before you select a mobility device for your child, be sure to consult his or her doctor, physical therapist as well as your child, to make sure that you select the right one for all the physical challenges involved. Depending on how you will finance the chair, you may find further direction on which wheelchair is available through your insurance company or disability assistance.
If at all possible, be sure to compare features, quality and adaptability to growth, when you select your child's wheelchair. Also, be aware of all warranties, return policies and repair requirements before you make a final choice.
Providing the right pediatric wheelchair for you child can make a world of difference in his or her life, so be sure to make a wise decision on this all-important disability aid.
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