Friday, January 20, 2012
Home Alterations Seeking To Create Independence for Seniors and Handicap
Independent living is a must for many seniors and physically challenged individuals. When you are using a wheelchair to access a home or vehicle that is not designed for those purposes the challenges may be a bit overwhelming. It is important that individuals build and put in place wheelchair access points with the use of ramps or lifts to ensure access for wheelchair users.
In order for bi-level access for wheelchair users wheelchair lifts are installed to make movement from one level to another simpler. Chair lifts are also another option. The disadvantage to this is that a wheelchair would need to be placed on each level. This fixture allows total independence within the home for users of wheelchairs.
Another room that is often brought up when it comes to independent living and access in the home is the bathroom. Privacy is a continued desire for individuals in wheelchairs or not. Access independently is a must. Showering, bathing, hygiene needs and toilet issues should all be accessed independently. This is a freedom as caregivers that should never be compromised. There is something liberating about caring for one’s self. Many fixtures exist to help keep bathrooms accessible and safe. Bathroom safetyaids range from a threshold ramp to accommodate a variance in flooring to showers that individuals can roll directly into. Counters are adjusted to fit the changing need, grab bars installed and high toilet put in to accommodate the different needs within the household environment.
The goal in home safety modifications such as wheelchair ramps and bathroom safety aids is to put individuals within the home in a comfortable, safe environment that is home to all occupants. Ramps are a major area in providing home access to wheelchair users. There are several different needs to fit the various uses one may be needed.
As mentioned earlier threshold ramps, the smallest of handicap wheelchair ramps, is the smallest of access ramps. They are simple to use, easy to install and provide ease in transition between the doors and other raised areas. They come in a variety of materials such as rubber, aluminum and wood.
Portable folding ramps are small, lightweight ramps similar to a threshold ramp. These ramps are meant to collapse and be carried with individuals to help with access into rooms that have a small platform or areas with just one or two smaller steps. Portable folding ramps can even be purchase for travel and put into a suitcase. Technology advances are coming along in regards to access for individuals using wheelchairs.
Modular ramps are another option if an individual is looking for a fix that is permanent but that could easily move with them. This is an option for more temporary, long term living arrangements that require a handicap wheelchair ramp access.
Options within the wheelchair ramp industry are abundant. A little research into a client’s situation and needs should give any handicap wheelchair ramp seller and installer a clear picture of the ramps that should be installed. The freedom of mobility and independence is a gift caregivers can give to their loved ones with the use of a few well thought of home safety modifications such as bathroom safety aids and wheelchair ramps.