Selecting a wheelchair can be quite trying. Today's wheelchairs come in an array of designs, styles and functions to address the requirements of people with diverse combinations of physical disabilities. There are an extensive amount of wheelchairs on the market that incorporate exceptional gadgets and accessories.
First time wheelchair buyers may find themselves overwhelmed by the numerous options available. Bear in mind that each individual wheelchair users has different needs and the wrong type of wheelchair may aggravate the wheelchair users condition. To minimize the likelihood of choosing a wheelchair that isn't suitable for your specific physiological condition, seek expert advice from your physician, therapist or possibly the wheelchair manufacturer.
Basic factors to consider when buying a wheelchair:
- Your age
- Body type
- Specific physiological conditions.
The main things you need to determine for your wheelchair are the wheelchair size, wheelchair style, type of footrest and armrest needed. You should also take into consideration the various wheelchair features. If speed is a consideration, an electric wheelchair is advisable rather than a manual wheelchair. Then there are options in joystick mounting: right or left-hand and fixed or swing-away. By way of wheelchair tyres, choose them on the basis of your driving conditions. You can also choose the type of leg rest, even the color that suits you. Your comfort, convenience and personal preference determine the features you select.
The price you pay for a wheelchair are combined from the cost of:
- The wheelchair itself
- Additional Wheelchair Features
- Wheelchair Accessories
- Replacement Parts
- Wheelchair Maintenance Costs
- Wheelchair training
Although the final tally may appear staggering, at the end of the day, the wheelchair becomes more about your well being and less about cost. Since you will probably be using your wheelchair on a long term basis, the price you pay becomes irrelevant as it pays for your comfort and mobility.
Take note that trying to save money when by buying a used wheelchair is seldom advisable. There are no assurances that a second hand wheelchair will suit your needs. Because wheelchairs are often customised to suit the wheelchair user, they are generally not suitable for others to use. Should you decide to buy a second hand wheelchair, make sure that your size and weight falls within the specified capacity of the wheelchair. Also, understand that wheelchairs do not have transferable warranties; meaning the wheelchair warranty lapses as soon as ownership is transferred.
To increase your chances of finding a second hand wheelchair that suits you best, take your time when comparing wheelchairs. Check your local rehabilitation centre, hospital and/or local disability organisation for advertisements posted on their bulletin boards, websites and newsletters. The more wheelchairs you compare, the better and make sure that you test the wheelchair before you purchase it.