When an individual is not physically capable of propelling a manual chair or if endurance is a problem, then power mobility is an option. The individual can use power mobility, if they have the cognitive ability and some form of motor control—whether through head, hand, or mouth—that can be used to operate the chair. If the individual does not have the cognition to operate a power chair independently, power mechanisms can be used to assist the caregiver in pushing or positioning the individual. Power chairs can be an expensive option and a user or caregiver should avoid entering a purchase agreement without consultation with a wheelchair specialist.
Wheelchairs have become an increasingly important intervention in the older adult. The options are endless and when combined properly can help maximize a person’s independence, health, and well-being.
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