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How to choose your wheelchair: Folding Vs Rigid Frames

Manual wheelchairs are of different varieties and designs which include rigid and folding frames. Yet these frames differ in the way that they are designed, constructed and the way they function. This makes each design unique and you will have to be careful when deciding to rent or purchase one.

To make the right decision and choose what is right for you, there are several factors that you must consider. These include:

  • The type of material used in fabricating the frame of the wheelchair.
  • The design and type of wheelchair frame that you are choosing.
  • What are the components included in the wheelchair and if they can or cannot be separated from the frame? This is essential when it comes to weight and size for storage and transportation.
  • Types of adjustments that you can make to fit your needs such as posture, comfortability as well as efficiency when it comes to better propulsion. 

 Frame material

This will determine the wheelchair strength, durability, and weight. Durability depends on the ratio of the frame material strength to the ratio of the weight. A wheelchair will be durable if the material used to design and construct the frame has a higher strength ratio over the weight ratio. Below is a summary of the variations, pros, and cons of different materials to consider when making your decision.

Titanium

This material has a higher strength to weight ratio as compared to aluminium and that means it requires less material when constructing the frame. With titanium, it is easy to create a lighter frame. Besides, it has high fatigue life and this makes it hard to bend or get damaged. Also, it is resistant to corrosion, unlike aluminium that requires an additional coating to protect it. Apart from that, it has been discovered that titanium has a dampening effect which helps to reduce vibration when propelling. Studies are still being made to confirm this.

Aluminium

It is a metal that is economical and easy to fabricate. The 7000 series aluminum has proven to be much stronger as compared to the earlier versions as less material is needed to fabricate and hence weight is reduced. The negative side of it is that there are higher chances of structural damage to the frame in case it is exposed to strains. This depends on the shape and design of the frame as some are constructed with support tubes while others are designed in a cantilever style.

Carbon Fibre

Recently carbon fiber has been introduced in the manufacturing of manual wheelchairs. This material is very light, stiff and corrosion-resistant. The downside of it is that it is expensive and hard to shape. Besides, it has poor impact-resistant where it can be damaged easily. This makes it be used only on some components to reduce the overall weight of the wheelchair.

The style and components used to make the wheelchair frame will determine the weight of the wheelchair as the base can only cover less than a pound. Even if the frame is not made from titanium the wheelchair must still be lighter.

Weight consideration in your decision making

You have two decisions when considering weight:

  1. The overall weight of the wheelchair,
  2. The lifting weight that involves the total frame and other components’ weight as well as the seat cushion and the back support.

When the overall weight is reduced it makes it easy for the user to propel the wheelchair. Besides, it helps to improve the durability and efficiency of the frame. Remember that during the manufacturing process a wheelchair can start with a lightweight frame and end up installing heavy wheelchair system components such as wheels, seat cushions, braking systems, etc.

It is also possible to have a heavy wheelchair that is well configured allowing the wheel propulsion to require less energy making it efficient and easy to propel. You have to be careful when making a comparison of the wheelchairs’ weights especially when the wheelchairs are from different manufacturers as the base weights are weighed differently depending on which components are installed or not.

Folding Frames Vs Rigid Frames

  1. Folding manual wheelchair: Normally this has always been regarded as a cross-brace design as the frame folds by half making the sides of the wheelchair slide coming together. Recently there has been a scissor-brace frame design on wheelchairs such as the Kuschall Champion brand design that gives the user the ability to fold and unfold the wheelchair from either side.

The cross-brace frame is designed in such a way that it involves many moving parts that allow the chair to fold. This adds weight to the frame although this has been improved. You can find them in both materials such as aluminium, titanium and carbon fiber. Initial designs comprised of only footplates which were able to flip up out to allow stand transfers. The design was improved and swing-away leg rests as well as removable arms got included. This made the wheelchairs lighter as some of the components were left out. Some of the wheelchairs come with quick-release axles that help to reduce the transfer weight as well as the size making the chair fit in small vehicles. There is a new version of the scissor-brace that folds by pulling in the release system from the front of the wheelchair. This makes it possible for the user to reach and fold it easily.

  • Rigid Manual Wheelchairs

The design concept for developing this wheelchair came from sports wheelchairs. Initially, the frame was made out of aluminium but later titanium started to be used as well as carbon fiber. Aluminium is mostly used in sports wheels as it makes the user use less energy while in propulsion. This design has few moving parts and this makes the wheelchair base lighter. The advantage of this chair being light is that each push makes the chair move further with less energy.

Frame Styles

There are two main types of rigid manual wheelchair frames. The first is designed into a monotube which is a single continuous tube that leaves the lower side of the chair open. This makes it easy to bring closer and across the body when you want to transport your wheelchair by a vehicle. Besides less tubing, it leads to a drop in the weight of the frame. Using titanium to design a frame creates a flex which is good for a soft ride but it requires the user to use extra energy for a push. Some people prefer a soft ride because it makes them feel more comfortable so they do not mind using extra effort for the push.

The second design of a rigid frame is designed in a form of a box where it is designed in such a way that it has added support tube that helps in adding rigidity below the frame, as a result, there is less loss of energy. This makes the chair have more space meaning that it is wider or deeper below thus taking up extra space over the body when being transferred into the vehicle. The advantage of this kind of frame is that it offers more stability as well as efficiency in propulsion.

Fixed front ends

Normally rigid frames have fixed front ends and this means that they never move out of the way for standing transfers. If you would like to have one of these then look for the one that has a single side flip-up footplate which opens the front area of the wheelchair when making a transfer. You should try the frame and see how it works before you decide to buy it. And when it comes to folding frames quick-release axles will enable you to easily remove the wheels.

Fixed and adjustable frames

Rigid frames are found into two categories which are fixed and adjustable frames. If you are using a chair and you already know your exact measurements of the frame as well as the angles, you can order a custom made wheelchair that cannot be adjusted as it will come with the measurements that suit you. If you are not sure of your exact body measurements, then an adjustable frame will be better for you.

Configuration of your wheelchair

If you are fit enough to propel your chair whether it is a manual or rigid frame, remember that one of the important things is the proper wheel alignment. This must be assessed by a professional or by the OT/PT. Proper wheel alignment is essential in protecting your shoulders and wrist as well as providing energy efficiency push-stroke. The wheels must be aligned with the shoulders and fingers to easily reach the axle.

This is normally based on the ability to balance the wheelchair depending on trippiness and it also depends on your skills and ability to manage the wheelchair with its wheels in a more forward alignment. For newly injured people should start practicing with the wheels further back until they have gained their strength, skills as well as trunk balance.

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Answered: how to open and close a wheelchair?

opening or closing your wheelchair when you are in the hospital or rehab seems tough especially if you have never used a wheelchair before. But you can ask your physical therapist to help you in opening or closing your wheelchair. He/she can help you if you need to transfer your wheelchair too.

A wheelchair is a device that helps people who have mobility issues to move from one place to another. These people may have had surgery, injuries or might be suffering from illness. In case you have a spinal injury, stroke you might experience paralysis which will lead to a weakness that will make you need a wheelchair for your mobility aid.

Types of Wheelchairs

A wheelchair has four wheels and a seat that is attached to the frame. The back wheels are usually bigger having rims that you can use to push the chair forward or backward as well as make turns. There are several varieties of wheelchairs that include electrical and non-electrical (manual) wheelchairs.

Electrical wheelchairs are those that can be propelled with a motor. You can maneuver a manual wheelchair using a joystick or remote control. Normally electric wheelchairs are usually heavy as they are installed with different components such as a motor, power battery, etc.

Manual wheelchairs are the common wheelchairs that can be moved at a push of your hand by turning the rims that are attached to the back wheels. Or an assistant can help to push the wheelchair by holding the handles that are on the back of the wheelchair. Normally manual wheelchairs are easily folded to allow easy storage and transportation.

The wheelchair has several moving parts that make folding and unfolding a challenging task. But you can still fold and unfold a wheelchair by following these instructions as most of the wheelchairs are alike and we do hope that these steps will work on most of them.

Opening Your Wheelchair

  1. Make sure that your wheelchair is on a flat solid surface.
  2. Check to see if the brakes are locked as you wouldn’t want your wheelchair to move away from you once you open it. Each wheelchair has a lever that enables the user to lock the wheels.
  3. Hold the seat of your wheelchair with one hand in the front while the other hand holds the back.
  4. Push the seat down to the center of the seat and this will cause the sides and wheels of your wheelchair to slide apart from each other.
  5. Keep pushing the seat all the way down until it is fully opened.
  6. When done, you can now use your wheelchair but you will have to recheck the brake lock in order to be sure that the brakes are locked before you sit on it.

Closing Your Wheelchair

  1. Check to be sure that the brakes are locked
  2. Hold the seat of the wheelchair with one hand at the front while the other at the back.
  3. Slowly pull the seat up and the seat will fold in half causing the wheels to move closer to each other.
  4. Fully raise the seat in the center and thus the wheelchair will be fully folded up and ready for storage or transportation.

In case you still have any questions or problems when it comes to opening or closing your wheelchair, then you can contact your physical therapist.

Conclusion

A manual wheelchair has many unfamiliar parts that can make the folding and unfolding process seem difficult. It is normal when you have no experience and you have never done the process before. But by following the above steps you will be able to safely fold and unfold your wheelchair for safe storage and transportation.

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frequently asked questions about knee scooters and walkers

Many patients ask a lot of questions about our knee scooters. This means that people are interested in compact mobility scooters than just having to depend on crutches. Below are the most commonly asked questions with answers regarding our knee walkers.

Q: Is there a difference between a knee scooter and a knee walker?

A: They both mean the same thing, and we normally use both phrases when talking to patients about them.

The phrase knee walker is an older term that most doctors like to use. While the term knee scooter is a recent phrase that was created to refer its technicality and what it serves.

You can use whatever term you like and still it will mean the same thing.

Q: How do I know that this knee scooter is right for me?

A: If you need to rent a scooter, we have done our research and tested several scooters that we could lay our hands-on and we are happy to name the best knee scooter on the market which is available for rent. This model is known as the Pathfinder which is made by RammTCL a company located just outside of Seattle.  This scooter as far as we are concerned is the most stable, durable, and the most user-friendly.

Most people hesitate when they look at the pathfinder as it weighs about 2.5 pounds more than other models which we offer for rental as well as purchase. In case you are always on the move from one city to another and you will always need to transport your scooter by loading it into a car or plane, then it will be in your best interest to purchase a lighter model that will make your recovery process easier.

The Roscoe is one of the best lighter knee scooters on the market and it is installed with adjustable brakes which gives you extra security when it comes to speed and stopping.

The DV8 is also among the lighter scooters and it features a dual braking mechanism that enables you to slow down or stop with either hand. DV8 is a bit lower weight capacity as compared to the Roscoe.  It supports 300 pounds while the Roscoe and the Pathfinder support 350 pounds.

Q: Do knee scooters turn, fold or work on carpet?

A: All the knee scooters turn by steering the handlebar in the same way just like a bicycle. And almost all the knee scooters fold up as they possess release levers that are responsible for folding.

You can use a scooter on the carpet even though the transition between different surfaces needs an extra amount of caution especially if you have a carpeted surface over a wooden floor or linoleum surface. Take precautions and move slowly over carpeted surfaces.

Q: What is the size of our knee scooters?

A: Our Pathfinder model weighs 25 pounds and you can adjust its handlers to reach a height ranging between 31 to 41 inches. The seat/pad that supports the injured leg, ankle or foot measures 2 inches and can be adjusted to different heights depending on your preference.

The DV8 model is lighter measuring 22.7 pounds. Its seat/pad range of height adjustments is within 3 inches. This means that its handlebar can only extend to not more than 38 inches high. This model supports only 300 pounds, unlike other models that support 350 pounds.

The Roscoe scooter has just the same dimensions as the Pathfinder the only difference is that its pad has an additional half-inch room of adjustment whereas the scooter itself weighs 2.5 pounds less than the Pathfinder.

Q: How to slow down a knee scooter?

A: All our knee scooters are installed with hand braking systems the same way as bicycles. You will have to be extra careful when braking making sure that you do not pull the brakes too hard as you can end up losing balance. To get used to brakes, we do advise our clients to have their scooters before surgery so that they can practice and get used to them. This ensures safety and comfort when you start using the scooter after surgery.

Q: Do I knee a prescription from my physician before renting a knee scooter?

A: We do not ask for a prescription when you want to rent our knee scooters. But it is in your best interest to have one so that you can submit it to your insurance provider for refund or cost coverage.

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Choosing the right Knee Walker or Scooter

What is a knee walker?

A roll about walker is a wheeled walker device that is designed in such a way that it takes weight away from your lower body parts helping you in the recovery process. The device enables you to move around while supporting your injured foot or leg to prevent it from extra injury.

A steerable knee walker is normally used as a substitute for crutches as crutches can lead to further injuries. Besides crutches are not comfortable for many people. A steerable knee walker device is a hand free device when using it and makes your day easier without hassles while offering you some comfort as compared to crutches.

Crutches are commonly used by people who have ankle, foot or lower leg injuries. This is because they are designed in such a way that they remove weight pressure from the injured area making the recovery process at least easier.

How to use a knee scooter?

You will be able to determine how to use the knee scooter while you in a standing position. The injured leg should rest comfortably upon the seat pad. The uninjured leg should remain straight on the floor while the injured leg keeps resting in the middle of the seat pad.

The handlebars should be kept in a straight right angle so that they can be easily reached and used. Besides you can adjust their height to correspond with yours. This can be done by locating the knob that is at the top of the handlebar tube, remove it and then set the right height that corresponds with you. After that, place the knob back in place then tighten it.

You will have to adjust the seat of the knee walker by locating the seat adjustment lever which is located under the seat itself. Hold onto the seat front to raise or lower the height of the seat. You can flip the lever below the seat also you can loosen it whenever needed. To do that, you will have to remove the safety pin which is located under the seat too. After making all these changes, make sure that you double-check to see if the knobs and seat are tightened to be sure that everything is rigid and secure.

When you are done with assembling your knee scooter and you are sure that now it is secure to use, you should take your time and read the user’s manual to learn how to operate it. This will help in preventing you from mistakes that may lead to future injuries. Besides, it will prolong the life of your knee scooter if you use it as directed by the manufacturer.

Before you start turning around your knee scooter, make sure that your uninjured foot, your injured knee as well as your hips are leveled and straightened together with your lower back.

To propel your knee scooter, you will have to use your uninjured leg thus preventing extra injuries and pain to the other injured foot. If it is your first time to use a knee scooter, it might take some time for you to get used to it. Make sure that whenever there is an obstacle in front of you apply the brakes to prevent an accident.

Once you are used to it then you can go on and ride outdoors. The more you use your knee scooter, the more you get used to it thus feeling more comfortable riding and maneuvering it.

Crutch substitute VS Crutch replacement

Normally seated knee walkers are used together with crutches and sometimes are substitutes to crutches. There is a new type of technology known as the KW-100. Recently people use knee walkers as substitutes for the conventional crutches as they are far better, comfortable, and easy to carry and get around with.

Crutches are becoming rare as people are abandoning using them because they seem to be inconvenient, as they are not easy to use and if not careful they can lead to falls and cause you further injuries. Besides some people suffer from other health issues such as arthritis which makes using crutches painful on a normal basis.

Hands-free knee walker

When using crutches, you will not only face health issues but they will destruct and annoy you in every way. Go to the supermarket for shopping with crutches it is likely that you will need someone to help you get around or to help you pick groceries. This is different from a knee scooter as you will be able to move around easily with no need for help as you can propel yourself and reach high grounds to pick anything you want.

You can easily reach higher grocery while on a knee scooter without having to worry about falling. Besides, when you walk for a long distance with crutches you will end up feeling itching under your armpits and you can have bruises and injuries too.

Using a walker after knee surgery

After surgery, you can have a knee walker as a substitute for crutches. Many people prefer using knee walkers because they are more convenient as compared to crutches. Crutches are uncomfortable and unreliable too. You can use a knee scooter even before surgery as soon as you are injured and after you have surgery.

Some of the patients need to have weight-bearing relief that is offered by a walker right before having surgery on the wounds such as ulcers and diabetic wounds as well as Torn Achilles tendon, or in case they are having surgery to the ankle or foot.

Also, a knee walker can be used after surgery to help a patient move from place to place during their healing process. The device will help the patient continue with his/her daily routines while protecting her tender as well as his/her newly operated foot or leg.

When using a knee scooter, you will use your uninjured leg to propel your scooter forward. When it comes to crutches your arms will carry most of your body weight which makes you feel uncomfortable. It is far better your health leg to propel the scooter than your entire body pressing on crutches.

Although propelling knee scooters offer more comfort as compared to crutches, that does not mean that you will not get exhausted. The scooter will allow you to be able to rest your body as well as offering you more stamina while you are on the move.

Leg Injury

The best part of using a knee scooter is that it still offers you an opportunity to continue doing some of your daily routines while recovering from your leg/knee injury. If you had a leg injury, it is better if you use a knee scooter rather than crutches as it will provide you with extra support and prevent your injured leg from any potential stress.

Using a knee walker as mobility for an ankle injury

An ankle injury is not different from a leg injury as the affected foot has to be taken care of during the healing process. Normally people use crutches when they have ankle or leg injuries but there are substitutes that a person can use for mobility.

The crutch substitutes include knee walkers which are more comfortable than crutches as you will not have to use extra muscles to carry your body weight.   A knee scooter offers a weight-bearing relief that is essential in case you are having an ankle injury.

Using a knee walker as a mobility aid after a foot injury

In case you had a foot injury then you should always be careful to prevent any weight pressure upon the injured feet as it might compromise the healing process. You can do this by using crutches as your mobility aid while you are in the recovery process. The problem is that crutches are not comfortable to use and sometimes are annoying and hard to maneuver.

Knee scooters are becoming common as many people are finding them to be the best alternative to crutches. These wheeled knee walkers are taking over crutches as people find them to be more comfortable and offering more support than crutches.

Using a knee scooter after a bicycle or car accident

If you had a bicycle or car accident you may have experienced injuries to your lower part of the body which will make it hard for you to walk or move from place to place. You will have to take a look into getting a knee walker or scooter which will offer you freedom as well as independence to do what you always do during your recovery process. Besides the device can also be used by people after fracture or surgery.

Knee scooters for elderly people

Depending on their physical conditions elderly people can use knee scooters for a short or long time. Those who have issues with weight pressure upon their lower they should use wheeled walkers while knee caddy can help them to balance out their body weight with no risk of further injuries.

A doctor or physician who will assess the senior’s injury will be responsible for prescribing or recommending of what an elder should or should not do upon the injured leg during the recovery process. This might include not to put any weight over the injured leg or foot. If the senior has mobility issues, then a roscoe knee walker can help him/her to move indoor or outdoor easily.

In case you cannot afford to buy a wheeled walker for your elderly, then crutches can help him/her to walk from one place to another.

Knee walker usage for seniors

This type of device works for the majority of elderly people but some find it difficult to use it due to their health issues. To use a knee walker a senior should have proper balance, vision, and strength to handle it effectively to prevent further injury.

Prevent Further injury

In case you had surgery or injury in your lower body, getting a knee scooter is essential as it will help you move easily indoors and outdoors. Knee walkers are exceptional as they are known for preventing further injuries. Besides knee walkers offer weight-bearing relief compared to crutches.

Reach higher when using a knee scooter

When you are using a knee scooter you will be able to reach on higher grounds as it offers support when you want to grab items that are on high racks. Also using wheel walkers will enable you to propel forward while making sure that your injured knee or ankle is preserved to heal faster and prevent any further injury.

What you should know is that mobility knee walkers offer support that will enable users to reach higher grounds as well as be able to reach places that they could not reach using crutches.

You will be able to easily get in the shower using a knee walker

Many people face difficulties in getting in and out of the shower as they usually get injured. A wheeled knee scooter will offer you the ability to easily get in the shower do what you want to do as you can use it for support.

Turning knee scooter

Normally a steerable knee scooter comes with a handlebar that can be used to control or steer the device. You can freely turn left and right as well as tilt the handle tube placing it at an angle for better comfort.

Maintenance – adjusting the brake tension

You can adjust brakes on the knee wheel scooter in case you have a feeling that the handle push is too loose or too tight. You can do this by locating the adjusting wash that is at the end of the brake cable just above the wheels. Then you can tighten or loosen it depending on what you desire to accomplish.

Characteristics of most knee walkers

  • Durable, foldable, and lightweight frame
  • Wheels on the knee walker
  • Seat
  • Tires
  • Levers
  • Kneel pad
  • Steering
  • Basket
  • Brakes

Knee walker price tags

Roll about knee scooters are available for sale through distributors as well as online stores such as Amazon. The KW-100 model knee walker is sold at a reasonable price and is available online in almost all online distributors.

Knee scooter cost between $100 to $400 depending on its features, quality and the store you purchase from.

Renting a knee scooter

There are many stores and companies available locally and online that offer rental services of different types and models of knee walkers. These help people who are having limited budgets yet in need of having these devices to rent them. Besides they are those people who just need the device for a short time like one or two weeks so buying is not necessary. Injured people and those from surgery prefer to go for crutch substitutes or knee caddy as they are far better than crutches. You can buy one if you need it for a long time or you can rent it whereas you will have to ship it back after your recovery.

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All about renting a knee scooter

I once suffered a foot injury after having a car accident that I found myself in hospital and I had to spend four months using a walking aid until I recovered from the injury. In another case, I suffered an ankle injury while playing football with my friends. This led me to experience unbearable pain that I could not freely walk for quite some time.

In both cases, I needed support to walk and therefore I had to use crutches which worked as a walking aid for me. But these were hard to maneuver and limited my walking speed. Besides, sometimes they caused itching under my armpits and made me feel uncomfortable.

Many people who find themselves in my situation are normally offered wheelchairs or crutches as means of walking aids. But the fact is that there is a better option available on the market which is more convenient and offers a great mobility level. This is known as the knee scooter for tough terrain.

What is a knee scooter?

This is just a scooter that is installed with an additional rest platform for your injured foot, ankle or knee. It is designed specifically to offer comfort and aid so that the user can move independently or with minimal aid after having surgery or injury.

This device is normally used after surgery acting as a mobility aid for the patient during his/her recovery process which might take quite some time. In case the surgery is more serious a wheelchair or bed rest might be required. Normally, the common crutches are known to discourage mobility instead of encouraging the user to walk. This is what makes a knee scooter an idle choice as compared to crutches. A knee scooter enables an injured person to move fast, easily, comfortably and independently. If the user needs help he/she might only need it when getting in or out of the knee scooter.

Its design is not different from a standard scooter, where it has handlebars, sturdy wheels, brakes, and its performance is not different from the standard scooter too. The unique feature that the knee scooter offer is that you can use one leg to push it along the course while the injured, leg, ankle or foot is out of action resting on the resting pad.

While you are in a knee scooter your injured ankle, knee or ankle will rest on the step which is attached to the scooter while your uninjured leg will push forward the scooter. The scooter comprises of handles to steer and maneuver it as well as brakes for making it stop. It has sturdy wheels that are designed in such a way that they offer stability and comfortability.

The knee scooters can be found in different types, models and sizes depending on the state and needs of the user. There are knee scooters for adults, elderly people, children, adults with small bodies, and paralysis patients. Your choice will depend on several factors depending on your needs.

Why would you need to have a knee scooter?

Even though crutches are common, but they are not the best choice as many people do not feel comfortable when using them, nor do they find them easy to maneuver. You might also feel that you cannot handle crutches due to their large size as well as the need to use upper muscle strength while walking.

Normally when using crutches or wheelchair the injured leg, ankle or foot is not always elevated and this prolongs the recovery time. Besides, the injured organ will experience weight pressure upon it when using crutches or a wheelchair. This is different when using a knee scooter and this is among the many advantages that make it a better choice as compared to the other. A knee scooter normally elevates the injured organ entirely and this means the injured area will not experience weight pressure as it will be sufficiently elevated.

Besides a wheelchair will limit your mobility restricting you from performing your daily routines as well as your general moving capabilities.  Perhaps you are used to being active and you need to keep your normal life throughout your recovering process, this is where a knee scooter can assist you. With a knee scooter, you can go on with your daily routines as your injured organ will be resting upon an inbuilt pad. On the other hand, you will be more independent with no need to depend so much on someone to assist you.

Normally if you had surgery or you are recovering from an injury you might experience being trapped. This can affect your mental state as your new state will limit your mobility and you will find it difficult to adjust to this new lifestyle. The knee scooter will help you in maintaining a certain level of your normal life as it will help you move from place to place and join your friends when they are having fun outdoor.

How can you rent a knee scooter?

There are several online markets from which you can rent a knee scooter in case you need one. There are local stores too although many people find online stores to be more convenient. However, not everybody has access to the internet and therefore for some people an in-store is the best option for them.

If you have mobility issues and you cannot walk around stores, then online stores are the only options for you. You can take your time to make your online research on the best available options according to your needs. If your injury is very serious, make sure that your decision on the type and model of the scooter is based upon your doctor’s prescription.

Making an online purchase is easy though there are several stages to be taken into consideration. The initial stage is to choose the product. This requires you to take your time and make your research before selecting the right product that will fulfill your needs. Your needs should depend on the following:

•            The extent of your injury

•            How long will the recovery process take?

•            Your body measurements which include weight and height

•            Do you have any allergies?

•            What is your style preference?

After you have made up your mind by considering the above points, you will be able to do more thorough and extensive research. You can go through the product reviews to have a clear picture of the product that will lead you to reach your decision. In case you still do not know what to do, then you can contact the customer care service support.

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Types of Wheelchairs that you can find in the market today

There are a lot of options when it comes to selecting a wheelchair. This is because there are several models out there with their sub-models as well as varieties that you can choose from depending on your taste, need, and preference. These include the following:

  • All-terrain wheelchairs
  • Airplane wheelchairs
  • Ergonomic wheelchairs
  • Beach wheelchairs
  • Bariatric wheelchairs
  • Pediatric wheelchairs
  • Reclining wheelchairs
  • Racing wheelchairs
  • Single-arm drive wheelchairs
  • Standing wheelchairs
  • Ultra-light wheelchairs
  • Tilt wheelchairs
  • Wheelchair stretchers

Getting to know a wheelchair

A wheelchair is just a straight-backed chair that has wheels that are connected to a locking mechanism. This can be used for transporting the injured, the ill, as well as people who suffer from mobility.

Main Usage

Mainly these are medical equipment considered to be Durable Medical devices for Medicare Category B. There are different types as well as designs but all of these are optimized for transporting the elderly, the sick and those with mobility problems.

Each of these types will be discussed in the sections that follow.

All types of wheelchairs

  • All-Terrain Wheelchairs: These are among the unusual types when it comes to wheelchairs. They have large inflated tires that have deep treads that enable them to move over any kind of terrain without any problem. 

Most of these models resemble scooters rather than wheelchairs, but still, they fall in a category of wheelchairs. These are perfect for outdoor mobility.

  • Manual Wheelchairs

These are the traditional wheelchairs that people are familiar with and are what people think of when you mention the phrase. These are common in hospitals as well as nursing homes. Their price tag is very low and most people can afford them.

The fact is that among all types of wheelchairs available in the market this is a sub-optimal selection because older people do not have strength in the upper body that makes it difficult for them to propel themselves, hence they will need someone to help them to push the wheelchair around. This makes a motorized wheelchair or scooter to be one of the best choices in case you can afford it.

Types of Manual Wheelchairs

These can be grouped according to their use and functionality

  • Sports
  • Lightweight
  • Reclining
  • Pediatric
  • Transport
  • Hemi-Height
  • Heavy Duty

Electric Wheelchairs

These are the most popular and many people prefer these because they allow the user to move around with freedom and with no need for someone to push the wheelchair. It makes the user independent thus not having to rely on an assistant or nurse. The only time a person will need help is when he/she wants to get in a chair.

As long as he/she is in a position she/he can move the wheelchair around freely.  Even people with difficult mobility can use these kinds of wheelchairs easily. They are good for patients with cerebral palsy as well as people with mobility restrictions. But it comes with a high price tag as compared to manually chairs.

Airplane Wheelchairs

These are more common to airlines as they are used to move around people who have disabilities. You can have one if you are among the people with disabilities and you keep traveling a lot.

These kinds of wheelchairs are smaller, flexible as well as lighter as compared to the manual ones. They are designed specifically to allow them to pass in-between the rows of the airplane seats. They also have safety buckles giving you the ability to buckle up while in flight just like other passengers.

You can still use them on your daily basis even if you are not traveling.

Beach Wheelchairs

These are made from Hollow aluminum tubes or PVC material with oversized wheels which enable them to move over beach sand. They are good for people who are having mobility issues and yet are looking forward to enjoying their time at the beach.

Bariatric Wheelchairs

This type of wheelchair is specifically designed for obese patients. It is made up of a sturdier frame that has a wide seat that provides a full range of adjustments which is good for people who have extreme weight problems,

Ergonomic Wheelchairs

These are designed to meet the standards by unifying the characteristics of manual wheelchairs and ergonomic office chairs together with the best lumbar support. These are best for those people who sit for quite a long time.

Pediatric Wheelchairs

These are kids-sized which are so identical to the full-sized ones. They are just small in size to fit their intended users.

Reclining Wheelchairs

These are among the wheelchairs with extremely advanced designs that are made in such a way that they offer all the benefits that come with the recliner, as they are rolled into wheelchairs. These wheelchairs come with pillows to offer more comfort to their users when resting in a reclined angle. You can have a sleep when sitting in any of these kinds of wheelchairs though you will need to add extra padding.

These chairs are the best options for patients suffering from spinal cord injuries and need to recline.

Single-Arm Drive Wheelchairs

One of the problems that come with manual wheelchairs is that the user needs to use both arms to propel it. If the user uses a single-arm he/she will end up turning the chair into circles. But the single-arm wheelchair solves this issue by using the axle to connect the two wheels thus allowing the user to move forward using one arm to propel.

Racing/Sports wheelchairs

These can be grouped into two:

A sports wheelchair is designed in the same way just like the standard wheelchair. The only difference is that the large wheels are adjusted to an angle that they tend to bend in towards the seat, making it able to make tighter turns and allowing the user to have full engagement in different sports such as tennis, basketball, etc.

While a racing wheelchair consists of large two wheels, angled inward just the same way as described above, with an addition of a smaller front wheel. This is designed for speed allowing the user to participate in racing.

Standing Wheelchairs

The name connotes the design, as they are designed to be used for standing. A lot of modern-day models allow configuration which makes them be used while standing as well as in a sitting position.

Tilt Wheelchairs

These are the best option when it comes to patients suffering from cerebral palsy and they need a recline. Both the tilt and reclining wheelchairs accomplish the same task but in different ways.

Ultralight Wheelchairs

These are extremely light as compared to other wheelchairs. They are made to make certain movements which include a shortened seatback. These are made using lightweight materials to make them very light.

Wheelchair Stretchers

This design is not for home use as it is often used by EMTs as well as hospital professionals. The design is very light and the wheelchair can recline to up to 180 degrees turning into a stretcher when the catch is set free.

The iBot

This is an additional type of wheelchair that I felt worthy of mentioning. It is a minor type that is why it is not listed among the major ones.

This has advanced technology with an extra set of wheels and in case you want to walk upstairs, the chair can rise and move on its two wheels and let you walk up or downstairs. Its unique design can move on any type of terrain.

In other words, all the other types of wheelchairs mentioned above are rolled into one making the iBot.

The first generation of this wheelchair was introduced for sale to the public, but because of its price tag that was extremely high, the manufacturer decided to discontinue it. Currently, a new version is available on the market which is still among the wheelchairs with the latest technologies.

Types of Elderly Wheelchairs

A portion of our population are elderly people and they use wheelchairs more than any other group.

There is no specific reason why an elderly person could not use any kinds of wheelchairs we just mentioned earlier, but the fact is that some wheelchairs are more convenient for elderly people than other wheelchairs. To understand this, we have to first know the types of wheelchairs which are available for elderly people.

Here is a shortlist of elderly people wheelchairs:

  • Manual wheelchairs
  • Electric wheelchairs/mobility scooters
  • Ergonomic wheelchairs
  • Bariatric wheelchairs
  • Ultra-light wheelchairs
  • Reclining wheelchairs

Some of the above wheelchairs will be good or bad depending on certain conditions. For example, an 89 pound senior has no practical need for using a bariatric wheelchair. On the other hand, older people have no strength that would let them push a manual wheelchair, therefore they will need someone to assist them.

Types of Wheelchairs suitable for Paraplegics

In this group, all members need to have a wheelchair to function. Despite their limitations, not all wheelchairs are good for them. Below is our shortlisted list of the wheelchairs which suit them:

  • Manual wheelchairs- these can be used when an assistant is available
  • Electric wheelchairs as well as modified scooters
  • Reclining wheelchairs
  • Ergonomic wheelchairs
  • Wheelchair stretchers
  • Ultra-light wheelchairs

Normally an electric wheelchair is an obvious choice for people having mobility issues, but when it comes to this group the only way to make it work is to install an Emotiv headset to allow the paraplegic to be able to control the motion of his/her wheelchair with simple movements like eye blinks or with thoughts.

A brief history of wheelchairs

When we try to track the history of wheelchairs we have to go back in 1595 when an unmentioned inventor made a wheeled chair for the King of Spain by then known as King Phillip II. But this design was never copied by anyone and when the King died the design disappeared.

It took another hundred years for the idea to resurface when Stephan Farffler who was a paraplegic watchmaker decided to create a mechanized wheeled chair for his personal use. The chair was installed over a three-wheeled frame, but just like King Phillip II’s chair when Farffler died the design died with him.

Then in the year 1783 what we recognize today as a wheelchair made its debut appearance. This chair was designed by John Dawson, from Bath city, England and that gave the design the name “Bath Wheelchair”.

The original design had a small single wheel in front and over time this design was modified and another wheel was added to the front just like how we see it today.

The typical design that is seen in most of the manual wheelchairs that we see today was invented back in 1933, by an inventor known as Harry Jennings who had a disabled friend.

The first patent to be filed for a motorized wheelchair is recorded to be in 1916, but it took more than 34 years until into the 1950s the device to appear as viable products.

Today’s wheelchairs

Due to technological advancements especially in the field of medicine, material science ad ergonomics, there has been a gradual change that has led to different types and variants of wheelchairs. Besides of all these changes, the wheelchairs still bear the fundamentals of the original design. This includes having two large wheels at the back as well as handgrips that allow someone walking behind the wheelchair to push the chair forward.

We have experienced a cutting edge technology where there is a mind-controlled wheelchair. This technology is independent of the wheelchair as it is contained in the headset gadget worn by the person who is sitting in the wheelchair. The headset works by measuring the brain activity and when the wearer is thinking to move forward the chair, measuring the difference in electrical signals as to when the wearer thinks “forward” “backward” “right” “left” and so on.

The headset identifies the changes in the brainwave patterns, whereas the electric wheel installed with the device can be controlled by that power of thought. This makes it the most advanced among all types of wheelchairs for paraplegics and for other people who have extreme mobility issues.

The following are some of the current wheelchair brands you can look upon

  • Invacare
  • Pride Mobility
  • Drive Medical

Check out our wheelchair rental in Madison, WI

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What should you Consider before you Rent a Wheelchair

It might come a time when you might need renting a wheelchair for a while. There are different models including scooters and power chairs available within the market. You need to plan before you decide to rent a wheelchair. This can be easy for you if you know your options.

Types of wheelchairs

There are quite several wheelchairs within the market that you can rent. Their only difference lies in whether the wheelchair is motorized or not.

Deciding whether to rent a motorized or a non-motorized wheelchair is something that should be discussed between you and your doctor. Your medical team might choose a wheelchair that will require you to use much of your muscle strength to prevent muscle atrophy which is a condition involving thinning of the muscles due to lack of use. Normally it is required in case you had an injury or surgery and you are expected to recover and your condition to improve.

You find some of the wheelchairs fitted with strong back support that will help you with issues like scoliosis. This kind of wheelchair is good for someone with back muscle weakness.

If you are suffering from conditions that show episodic weakness signs such as multiple sclerosis or extreme inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIP), your medical team will customize your wheelchair to fit your medical needs each time the issue arises. Their decision on the type of wheel or customization will be based upon the state of your motor weakness.

Where can I rent a Wheelchair

If you decide to rent a wheelchair for your use or your loved one due to medical issues, then you will have to contact your insurance provider on which vendors to use. Normally insurance providers have contracts with suppliers and that means they will only pay wheelchair rentals that are from those only.

If you are discharged from the health facility or hospital, then the case manager can direct you to a vendor that is approved by your health insurance plan. Besides he may arrange for you to have a wheelchair as soon as you leave the hospital.

In case you do not have an insurance plan or a wheelchair is not covered by your insurance plan, then you can rent one from a local medical store near you.

Long Vs Short term rentals

You might need to rent a wheelchair for a day, or a week or even as long as a year. The costs of renting differ from one vendor to another and that includes the terms of rent. There are differences between renting a wheelchair for the short and long term. These are as follows:

  • Cost: Normally renting a wheelchair for the long term is cheaper than for a short term. No matter whether the insurance is covering the costs, you might face limitations in your coverage or you might be required to pay a percentage of the renting cost.
  • Contracts: When it comes to long term rentals you will be required to sign a contract while a day-long rental normally does not require one to sign a contract, though it might require you to make a security deposit.
  • Selection: There are different varieties of wheelchairs to choose from especially when renting one for a long term rental. Besides vendors that offer long term rentals are likely to have other equipment such as power lifts and ramps and case, you need them.

What to consider before renting a wheelchair?

  • Damage: You must make sure that you inspect the wheelchair to identify if it has any damage or mechanical issues. In case you identify any issues, immediately inform the vendor or else you might end up losing your security deposit.
  • Comfortability and features: You can take the wheelchair out and take a test drive to make sure that it makes you feel as comfortable as you can. Besides test all the features which are listed on the manual to make sure that they are in full operation.
  • Convenience: Often you will need to transport your wheelchair in case you are moving from one location to another that requires you to use car transport or train. In this case, you will need a wheelchair that can be easily transported. Some of the wheelchairs can be folded and easily transported. If you think you will be traveling often make sure that you put this into consideration.
  • Exchangeability: You might consider asking your vendor if their policy allows exchanging the wheelchair to another mode whenever needed without any extra charges.

Renting vs. buying a wheelchair

Each of the two has its pros and cons and below we will go through them both:

  • Cost: Before you decide on renting a wheelchair or scooter you must be aware of the total cost involved as well as the security deposit. Normally buying your wheelchair is cheaper than renting one. Sometimes renting a wheelchair for a week can cost the same amount as buying one.
  • Adaptability: In case you have medical problems that keep changing and you need to keep changing the models of wheelchairs, then renting will be the best option for you.
  • Familiarity: Adapting to a new wheelchair might take some time and once you are familiar with it you might want to keep it.

Ho to find wheelchair rental when you travel

When you are away from home and you need a wheelchair, you can try using resources such are travel agents, hotels and airports. These will help to direct you to vendors that can rent or sell one to you. In case you are not traveling to your destination or if you are just traveling for leisure with friends and families then you have to make your research through local resources and thus making your arrangements

  • Air travel: You can reserve or rent a wheelchair in advance when traveling via the airport. You will have to call airport customer care services, or you can reserve one through your airline. Besides you can even get an escort to help you move around. All these will cost you but the prices are minimal or there are no costs for those with disabilities.
  • Hotel: You may be able to make some arrangements and have a wheelchair ready at your arrival in case you are checking in a hotel or vacation rental home.
  • Travel agent: You can contact your travel agent to have your wheelchair ready at your destination once you get there.
  • Tourist destination: Normally tourist destinations such as amusement parks and museums have guest wheelchairs waiting for any guest in need. You can make a call and make sure that you have one waiting.

Making your arrangements: You can decide to make your research and find vendors who are renting wheelchairs and other mobility aids. This will give you a chance to go through several options and find one that fits your needs.

Check our wheelchair rental program in Madison Wisconsin

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The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Knee Walkers Over Crutches For Ankle Or Knee Surgery/Injuries

Ankle and knee injuries will limit your movements. I have experience in both situations. I had a serious knee injury that left me in serious pain that I could not walk. I had to sit down every three minutes as the pain was unbearable and I could not take it anymore.

There was a time in my life that I broke my ankle and this led me struggling to move around. I had to get crutches so that they could help me move from place to place. They worked but now I do realize that a  knee walker would have been the best option.

Each mobility device has its pros and cons and the fact is when it comes to ankle or knee surgery/injuries you would prefer a knee walker over crutches or it might be in an opposite way depending on your situation. The choice is up to you so you will have to spend your time and do your research before you decide to go for any of the devices.

Knee Walkers

In reality, knee walkers are the best, they are the best option when it comes to lower-body injuries. When you are using a knee walker, you will have the ability to move around town. But they are difficult to maneuver when moving up or on tough terrain.

For a standard knee scooter, you will face challenges when moving over gravel, rocks, and sand, but there are other options known as all-terrain scooters that can deal with every kind of terrain.

When moving over pavement or any hard surface you will be able to easily use your knee scooter with great efficiency. When using a knee scooter you will be required to do the following:

  • You will have to place your injured knee upon the knee pad
  • You then have to bend your knee at a 90-degree angle and use  the other uninjured leg to propel your scooter forward
  • Below are things you must consider when using a knee scooter. The following are the pros and cons of a knee scooter:

Pros of using a knee scooter after an ankle Surgery

  • You do not require upper body strength when using a knee scooter
  • They are more comfortable as compared to other devices
  • They speed up your mobility

These are benefits you will get in case you had ankle surgery. When using a knee scooter all the weight is placed upon a tibia and then supported through the knee and this means that your ankle will not experience any pressure.

You will be able to use your injured leg’s hip, your butt as well as your stabilization muscles. This will enable you to continue with your daily routines. Besides the risk of falling or slipping is minimal as compared to using crutches.

Cons of using a knee scooter after an ankle Surgery

  • Weight is placed upon the knee
  • You are forced to bend the knee at 90 degrees
  • The knee walker comes with a high price tag

As knee walkers place all the weight upon the knee, you might experience pain, swelling as well as other issues following the knee surgery.

Crutches

These are referred to as true mobility aid and they have been around for a thousand years and still have their place in today’s world. When you have an injury than can bear weight on your injured leg or knee, then crutches are a good option to aid your mobility.

People who had ankle surgery do better with knee walkers but when they want to walk upstairs or on rough surfaces, then crutches come into play.

There are pros as well as cons for using crutches, but the pros work for both knee as well as ankle surgery.

Pros of using crutches after an ankle Surgery

  • They work on all kind of terrains
  • No weight pressure is experienced over the whole leg
  • They are affordable
  • They are portable and easy to transport

Crutches are easy to use on and rocks but the risk of falling is very high as compared to knee scooters. This is because your entire weight will be upon the crutches and in case you slip you might end up falling.

The good thing is that crutches remove all the weight from your knee or leg so the healing process will not involve excess discomfort or pain.

Besides crutches are sold everywhere, in local stores as well as online stores such as Amazon.

Cons of using a knee scooter after an ankle Surgery

  • They require you to use excessive upper body strength
  • They force you to place all the bodyweight under your arms
  • They do not let you pressure any weight upon the injured leg even if you only have an ankle injury
  • They are hard to use when going upstairs or on icy surfaces

They are known to cause pain when used for a long time. Your underarms will experience ache as well as being hurt. Besides crutches decrease mobility speed as compared to knee walkers. Also, you cannot use the leg muscles in such a way that you do when using a knee walker.

When moving over icy surfaces you are facing a big risk of falling, besides you will face difficulties when it comes to walking up and down the stairs. This is also impossible when using a knee walker as it will be impossible to walk up or downstairs. Also as mentioned before a lot of bodyweights is placed upon the arms, so if you had an accident that caused an injury to your ankle or knee as well as the upper body, then there is no way you can use the crutches.

You can use both crutches and knee walkers thus switch between them depending on the situation.

For many knee surgeries, crutches are the standard walking aid until the doctor prescribes you to have a knee walker.

When it comes to ankle surgery, most people prefer knee walkers as they do not require extreme upper body muscles to propel forward. Besides, they are more stable and the make mobility fast and easier. If you are in a dilemma on what to go for, you can ask your surgeon to give you medical advice.

If you check out our knee scooter rental in Madison, WI areas.

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Pros And Cons For Using A knee scooter versus standard crutches

Just sit for a moment and think about the pros and cons that come with using the knee scooter vs standard crutches when you are recovering from surgical injuries.

Even though crutches may seem to be the simple option, knee scooters, as well as walkers, offer more benefits. In case you have some issues that cause pain when you put weight on a lower or you just feel uncomfortable, it is time that you had a second thought on getting scooter or walker.

When you are planning in buying a mobility aid, you must think critically about the pros and cons of the scooter vs standard crutches.

Before you jump into buying a pair of crutches, just think for a while how a knee scooter will make your recovery easier by making you roll easily from place to place. That means faster and more comfortable.

The following things you must put into consideration before you buy a knee scooter or crutches:

Overall Ease

when you think about overall easy for your daily movements, then a knee scooter will surely win. The device will assist you in moving, while crutches rely on your upper body strength in carrying the weight of your injured leg. Knee scooters are easy to operate and move around and therefore these devices are the best option for you when it comes to mobility.

Weight Restrictions

Crutches usually come with weight limitations and thus make them unsafe for heavier patients. This is not a problem when it comes to knee scooters or walkers, as there are designed in different sizes and models to accommodate different types of people depending on their height and weight.

Body strength

As I have previously mentioned scooters do not need your muscle strength like crutches. This makes them to be the best option for elderly people as well as people with disabilities. Since they do need strength to operate them this encourages users to move around and hence removes their mobility limitations making them live their normal lives and keep doing their day to day routines.

Weather Resistance

Crutches are difficult to use in inclement weather conditions; as the rubber feet can be slippy in certain terrain or ice. This makes it difficult for a patient to balance and move. When it comes to scooters, they are designed in such a way that they can perform well in all types of climates as well as weather conditions. This helps to reduce the risks of falling and getting extra injuries.

Everyday Applications

Using a scooter makes your day to day routine easy such as eating, drinking and moving around. You can easily maneuver a scooter as compared to crutches which they are hard to maneuver hence making the whole day to day experience hard. If you want to keep doing what you do during your recovery period, then go for a scooter.

Comfortable Convenience

comfortability and mobility are very important when it comes to recovery. Scooters will offer you both while crutches will offer you none of the two. A knee scooter offers you a place to rest your injured knee while crutches do not offer such a thing.

Limitation to what you always do

If you cannot go or move around like you used to do, that will cause more pain than the injury that is keeping you from enjoying your moments. If your colleagues want to go to the party, or beach or hiking and you would like to join them, the crutches will slow you down.

This is unnecessary because many beautiful parks, as well as wilderness, have paved paths. This means

That you can use a knee walker just like anyone else on the trail. You can enjoy your surroundings while moving around. This is because when you have a knee walker you can decide when to speed up or slow down with no problem.

You can even decide to carry water bottles and snacks in your basket, which will be good for all of your company.

While having fun at the pack you be able to rest while waiting for your friends. This will make them at ease as they can move around knowing that you are feeling better. But if you do not mind you can still join them and move around with them when you have your knee walker, something that you cannot do with crutches.

Mobility

Crutches will limit your movements hence you will not be able to maintain your daily routines. This will be worse when it comes to children who normally are very active rolling here and there.

Slow movements will hinder the kids’ funny moments and that will make not only a child even a grown-up feel more pain.

The knee walker makes you maintain your daily routines, which makes you feel like you are living your normal life.  And this will be the best option for kids who do not want to be left out by their friends. So using a knee walker will help them continue with their daily routine.

If you have an injury or difficulties that need mobility aid, then you should consider your options carefully. Before you rush for the crutches, think about the difficulties that will come along and consider the benefits that will come along when you decide to opt for a knee scooter.

check out our knee walker rental here. we also offer all terrain knee scooter

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10 things you must know about hospital bed rental

It does not matter if you are old or recovering from an injury, it is normal that there are times when a regular bed can be a challenge.

Sometimes getting out of your bed in the morning might be a challenge and your bed might make you feel uncomfortable when you sleep.

When facing a situation like this, you might think of having a hospital bed which can prove to be of good help. If you are looking forward to having a hospital bed for your home, then you will be facing two options which are renting or buying your bed.

Renting a hospital bed might seem a good idea, but you should consider several factors. Continue reading to get to know about issues that come with renting a hospital bed as well as what you should know before you make your decision.

Should You Buy A Hospital Bed

Before you decide and rush things, lets us see what makes them special when compared to normal beds,

Hospital beds have height as well as head and feet adjustments. This means that they have raise that can raise and lower different sections of the body. These beds are specifically designed for seniors as well as injured people.

If you or your loved one is in a state that he or she facing mobility issues, then it is time that you should think of getting him or her a hospital be.

You might have issues of getting in or out of your normal bed, when you are in this situation then a hospital bed will be of good help.

Sometimes you might even have issues sitting up to get out of your bed, if not you your partner might have this trouble and you can no longer continue lifting him or her to her feet. Balance issues can also pose a major risk of falling when getting out of bed, where you will be likely to face injury that can lead to deaths. It is estimated that more than 645,000 people die because of injuries caused by falling each year.

Bedridden people find hospital beds as a good help. Laying in bed for a long time throughout day and night causes a lot of problems including blood circulation, pressure wounds as well as back and neck pains. Also, the patient’s mental state may suffer due to mobility.

Also, some of the hospital beds can be so helpful in treating some of the injuries and body conditions. We will be discussing this in the following chapter. There are also hospital beds that are specifically designed for severely burnt victims. There are also hospital beds which are mainly for patients suffering from spinal injuries. These beds make them feel comfortable and make the task of the caregiver easier.

Ten things that you should keep into consideration before you rent a hospital bed

  1. Control systems

Almost a lot of today’s hospital beds are electrical beds. These can be controlled using a remote control which has different buttons that have specific adjustments such as raising and lowering the foot and head of the bed together with the entire level of the bed surface itself. This is so much helpful for caregivers as well as patients because without these adjustments a caregiver might need help in putting the patient in different positions or getting him or her out of the bed.

Gatch-beds are an old fashioned version of the electric beds, with every adjustment of the bed being controlled by hand cranks and this means they are mechanical. The hand crank is located at the foot of the bed and it can be pushed under the bed frame when it is not in use. These beds need a caregiver who can bend down to reach the cranks and that means the patient cannot control the bed himself.

  • Special beds

These are low beds which are ideal for patients who might be facing a risk of falling out of the bed even if the beds have side rails. These include people suffering from seizure problems or sleepwalkers. The beds have a height of not more than two feet from the floor and normally have no option of raising or lowering the entire surface.

People who are using this bed should have the ability to stand up from the low position because the bed is just a few feet from the floor. If they cannot do it by themselves then a caregiver should offer them help.

  • Low air loss beds

These are no different from an air mattress, as they are made of special sacs within the whole mattress. These help to relieve some amount of pressure caused by the person’s body weight which impressing into a bed. This is very important in preventing bedsores as well as ulcers. Besides these kinds of beds are good for burn victims or people who have undergone skin graft as their skin needs a gentle touch.

  • Circo electric beds

These kinds of beds are good for patients who have severe burns or spinal injuries hence it is difficult to move them in normal ways. These beds give you the ability to reposition as well as letting you turn the person in a position that will keep their lungs as well as the circulatory system in a good working condition. These are the best substitutes of hospital beds for people with such difficulties.

  • Clinton beds

These are the advanced tech hybrid of low air loss beds. Unlike the normal low air loss beds which are filled with air, these are filled with sand-like material where warm air is pumped in. This helps to maintain a constant temperature throughout the bed, as a result, it helps in relieving the pressure wounds.

Renting a hospital bed VS buying one

If you have reached to a conclusion that you need to have a hospital bed, then you will be facing several options regarding how you can get one. Of course, you can just buy one and your insurance may cover the cost. Otherwise, you can rent one in case you cannot afford to buy one or if you do not want to buy one outright.

But before you decide on whether to buy or rent a hospital bed, you must first answer this question. For how long will you need it?

In case you just need it for several weeks or a few months while you recover from your injuries, then renting one will be cheaper. This option is also best for people who want to spend their final days in their own homes.

In case you will need a hospital bed for several months or even years, then the renting cost will exceed the cost of buying your hospital bed. Besides, several issues come with renting a hospital bed:

        I.            Quality

Most of the used adjustable beds are found to be in normal conditions because they are used for few month. Sometimes some normal might lead to breakdowns as well as faults, especially in fully electric beds. So you will have to take your time to find one which is still in good condition. Besides buying a new hospital bed gives you a guarantee that it is in its best condition and you will have a warranty.

      II.            Availability

Getting a used hospital bed is not easy because the beds are being used for quite a long time and this makes it hard to find beds that are just floating around. This makes it hard to have many options since the number of used beds is limited.

Instead of thinking that the right bed is there for you, you need to be sure that the exact model and type that you want is there. Having to rent a gatch bed instead of a semi-electric bed or Clinton bed instead of a low bed might not seem of importance at first. But remember this is something that involves your health hence your life.

    III.            High costs for repair and maintenance

It is common to find used beds in a bad condition and that means you will spend more on repairing and maintenance.

   IV.            Hygiene

It is advisable to use clean hospital beds due to hygiene issues. This is because you have no idea who was using it in the first place. Besides, you do not have any idea what infectious disease they were carrying and this makes it worse.

     V.            Limited options in customization

It is not easy to customize a hospital used bed because most used beds have some parts missing or it may be outdated. New modernized beds allow you to have modern conveniences such as waterproof mattresses, USB hubs as well as folding technologies.

Costs

The biggest concern for many people about whether to rent or buy a hospital bed is the price tag. But in either case, your insurance can cover the costs as we will see in the coming chapter. Firstly, let us see how much each of the options might cost.

On average the cost of renting a hospital bed per month is likely to be $200 to $500 per month. If we assume you are paying $350 per month for renting your hospital bed, that means in a period of 6 months you will spend $2,100. This does not include extra charges such as repair and maintenance or any other additional costs associated with renting.

Buying your hospital bed will cost you between $500 to $10,000 depending on how advanced in terms of technology your bed is. Common models of electrical beds costs around $2,000. Therefore, for just a period of 6 months rental, you can spend as much as the money needed to own your hospital bed.

In case you will be having a bed for some years in your home, outright buying of a hospital bed can save you a thousand bucks. Even if you are planning in using the bed for six months it is still in your best interest to buy your bed.

If you’re planning on having the bed in your home for many years to come, buying the bed upfront can save you thousands. And even if you only use it for the six months it would take for the rental costs to equal the buying price, at the end of that time, you’ll own the bed.

When you are done using it then you can sell it and get back so of the money you spent on buying it.

Insurance

Under normal circumstances, patients will not have to pay for the costs of their hospital beds no matter whether they are buying or renting.

You must understand that every policy differs from the other and your insurance coverage may vary from the other. You should contact your insurance company to get information regarding your policy and hospital beds.

Normally Medicare plans will just cover 80% of the total price tag of a hospital bed. For a normal standard hospital bed, that means you have to pay $400 from your pocket. Besides Medicare can also offer financial help when it comes to hospital bed rentals, and under the new policy after thirteen months of renting you will eventually own it.

Getting a Referral

In case you are having issues in getting Insurance to cover your hospital bed costs then you can talk to your doctor as he/she can direct you to one of the insurance companies.

Your doctor can write a prescription that you need to have a hospital bed at your home as among the items needed for your recovery and that means insurance will cover it. Besides doctors are good at recommending reputable companies because they have experience with several different companies.

Conclusion

Having a hospital bed at home during your recovery can make the whole experience less painful. Besides if you need one in the final days of your life then it will help you depart more comfortably. Also, it will make the task of your caregiver less difficult. Buying your hospital bed is better than having to rent one.