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Who Needs Wheelchairs and How to Choose the Right Wheelchair?

Many different types of disabilities require the use of wheelchairs for mobility. Disabilities may be orthopedic, relating to the bone and muscles, or neuromuscular, relating to the nerves and muscles. These are referred to as mobility impairments. 

Medical conditions that require wheelchairs for rent are of many types based on the disease but finding an appropriate wheelchair that meets every patient’s individual needs is very important. A suitable wheelchair, whether manual or electronic, sitting or standing, reclining, or tilting, will be the one that offers the best opportunities for independence, mobility, and comfort.  

Some of the most common disabilities that require wheelchair assistance are:

  • Cerebral Palsy 
  • Alzheimer’s Disease 
  • Amputation 
  • Diabetes 
  • Multiple Sclerosis 
  • Muscular Dystrophy 
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis 
  • Parkinson’s Disease 
  • Brain Injury 
  • Spinal Cord Injury 

The diversity of short- and long-term reasons someone might need medical equipment for rent, such as wheelchairs, is such that it is impossible to attempt to list them. Apart from these long-term diseases and illnesses, the other reasons why one might need a wheelchair are: 

  • People who can walk fine but only for a short distance due to, e.g., a heart problem 
  • People who have an injury or condition which could be made worse by walking 
  • People who can walk fine but may suddenly collapse without notice, like in epilepsy, heart trouble, etc. 
  • People who are in severe pain when they walk 
  • People who can only walk very slowly 
  • People who find it extremely difficult to walk with or without a mobility aid like a rollator or crutches 
  • People who literally cannot walk at all, even with crutches or a frame

Choosing The Right Wheelchair

Whether you are in a healthy condition or are unable to walk on your feet, getting a wheelchair for rent can be the best idea. But before you buy a wheelchair, you should have some knowledge about it. The following are some tips to be followed to buy the best wheelchair for you. 

  • Weight

Most people first encounter wheelchairs at hospitals. Steel wheelchairs, however, are not very practical for consumers because they are very heavy and would be difficult for women to lift into a car or taxi boot. 

  • Detachable or Fixed?

Many elderly people who can still stand and transfer themselves from a wheelchair to a chair, toilet seat, or bed can use wheelchairs with fixed armrests and footrests. Those whose conditions are more severe may need detachable wheelchairs that can flip up or swing away, allowing the user to slide sideways from one seat to another without standing up. 

  • Seat Width

To choose a seat width, you should pick something that will fit more or less comfortably. The widest wheelchair possible is preferred by many elderly clients as they can put more things such as a purse beside them. However, wide seats tend to encourage slouching sideways, which leads to bad posture over time and can result in scoliosis. Additionally, wider wheelchairs are actually harder to maneuver in tight spaces, such as narrow doors. 

  • Back Rest Support

Many frail older people curve forwards at the top of their back, which hurts, messes with their sitting position, and makes eye contact tough. It is really important to make sure the wheelchair has a backrest that accommodates and supports the contours of their back correctly 

  • Manual or Electric

Electric wheelchairs are more comfortable and require less effort to operate. These devices enable users to make tight turns and easily cross thresholds. The wheelchairs come with a very solid structure yet are lightweight and easy to disassemble. The on/off switch is easily accessible by any user, and a selector switch adjusts the speed. 

The use of manual wheelchairs allows people who can still move their upper limbs to maintain their independence.


Choosing the right wheelchair is a highly individualized process. There are many different types of manual and power wheelchairs for rent and purchase, and each person needs different features to help them sit properly, maintain posture, and use the chair. 

It would help if you had a specialist assessment by someone who is skilled in both wheelchairs and their use. 

Ask your doctor for a referral to wheelchair services; if that does not exist where you are, then speak to a place that sells wheelchairs about your needs- they may have an assessor.

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