What Is a Customized Wheelchair?
A customized wheelchair is one which has been customized to meet their individual needs. It
is either propelled by a person or motor.
The apparatus is specific to the physical needs to the individual and is most important for
their comfort and posture.
A customized stroller is an apparatus for very children, which will meet the needs for the
child and the parent / guardian.
What Is a Customized Wheelchair Prescription?
A wheelchair prescription is given to people by a doctor who must first assess a patient’s
ability to walk and move before he or she provides a wheelchair prescription. There are many
types of wheelchairs: manual wheelchairs are pushed or operated solely by the arms of the
user, power wheelchairs can be operated electronically. The doctor will determine which
best fits the needs of the patient.
Who Benefits from a Customized Wheelchair Prescription?
Patients with temporary or permanent disabilities can benefit from a wheelchair prescription.
For instance, a paraplegic experiences no feeling in the legs and may require a wheelchair for
the rest of his or her life. A person with broken bones may need a wheelchair prescription
until injuries have healed.
Wheelchair prescriptions are based on individual need, and several factors are considered.
People with the following conditions may benefit from a wheelchair prescription:
- musculoskeletal issues
- neurological issues
- balance or gait problems
- inability to walk for long distances
How to Choose a Customized Wheelchair
If a doctor determines that you will benefit from using a wheelchair; then your prescription
and supporting medical information will be sent to an insurer-approved wheelchair supplier.
A Customized Wheelchair design and usability vary greatly, but the two major types of
wheelchairs are manual and electric. Manual customized wheelchairs are less expensive than
electric but can still be quite costly.
With a prescription, some insurance companies will cover the cost of a customized
wheelchair. A customized wheelchair needs to properly fit the person using it and include all
necessary features. Your doctors and other medical professionals will help decide what
wheelchair is best for you. They will consider your condition, age, size, strength, mobility,
lifestyle, home environment, budget and personal preferences. The chair will be fitted to
your needs and body; including: seat height, leg rests, backrest angle, and arm positioning.
How to Use a Customized Wheelchair
After you get a wheelchair prescription and the right chair, you may need instruction on using
the chair. If necessary, medical professionals can help you learn how to navigate various
terrains. Therapy may include practice moving on different kinds of surfaces, over curbs,
through doorways, forward, backward and so on. If the chair has electric controls, some
instruction on their use may be necessary. Beyond moving in the wheelchair, you may need
to learn how to get in and out of the chair, what to do if you begin to fall and other skills that
are relevant to your situation.