Picking the right wheelchair is more complicated than you might think. There are hundreds of wheelchairs to choose from depending on your mobility level. In order to choose the right one and in order for it to be covered by insurance, you have to follow certain guidelines when choosing a chair.
After a spinal cord injury, most people go through their physical therapist when deciding on a wheelchair. Physical therapists are trained to choose a wheelchair. If you’re no longer in rehabilitation, mobility equipment businesses have specialists to help customers choose a wheelchair.
Typically, the process involves first making an appointment with one of their specialists, who will have you come to the facility to try various wheelchairs in-person. Once you find one you like, they will fill out the initial paperwork and send it into your insurance for approval.
Always consult a medical professional before ordering. Not only do you need to make sure you purchase the right wheelchair, you need to make sure you give the manufacturer the exact measurements. Having a properly fitted wheelchair is extremely important for your long-term health.
Why Buy a Manual Wheelchair
For many people, using a manual wheelchair is the right choice. Manual wheelchairs can keep you in great shape, they allow you greater independence in visiting family and friend’s homes and they cost much less than a power wheelchair. Another reason to choose a manual wheelchair – they don’t break as easily and can be fixed quicker and cheaper. There are literally thousands of manual wheelchairs to choose from. Make sure to do your research.
Why Buy a Power Wheelchair
For others, a power wheelchair may be their only option due to their severity of paralysis. Anyone with full arm paralysis will use a power wheelchair, as will many quadriplegics with partial arm paralysis. Power wheelchairs allow people to go long distances without tiring, allowing a great sense of independence. They’re also much more stable and cannot tip as easily, offering tank-like safety. Power wheelchairs also have high-tech features like an elevator seat, tilt and elevating leg rests.
Power Add-On Option
There are dozens of unique wheelchair accessories and wheelchair hybrids that have come to the market giving wheelchair-users more options than ever before. The most popular accessory by far is a power add-on for manual wheelchairs, such as the SmartDrive. This is an additional wheel with a built-in motor that can be added to any manual wheelchair, making the chair a breeze to push. Many quadriplegics are able to finally use a manual chair on their own thanks to these power add-ons. Check it out: https://www.amazon.com/SmartDrive-MX2-Wheelchair-Power-Assist/dp/B06Y14YCHL