Medical conditions and frailty can cause disabilities that confine an older adult to a wheelchair. Some people who use wheelchairs feel like all people see when they look at them is the chair. If your older family member feels that way, instead of letting it get them down, encourage them to embrace it by personalizing their chair. When family caregivers help to personalize their chairs, it can make the older adult feel more comfortable in it and like the chair is a part of them instead of a burden. In addition, having a personalized chair can also be fun and help them show who they are. Below are 5 ways that caregivers can help older adults make their wheelchair more their own.
#1: Wrap the Chair
Find some colorful athletic tape or vet wrap tape and wrap it around the metal bars of the chair. It’s available in many colors and patterns, so the senior can pick the one they like best. Not only does the tape jazz up the chair, it also keeps the metal surfaces from burning the senior when the chair has been out in the sun.
#2: Get a Seat Cover
If you’re a caregiver who’s handy with a sewing machine, you can sew a seat cover for the older adult’s wheelchair using fabric of their choosing. You can also purchase colorful cushions and seat covers online.
#3: Buy a “Wheelchair Pal”
Wheelchair Pals are fuzzy animal shaped covers that slip over the arms of wheelchairs to make them more comfortable to rest arms on. They can also make the wheelchair less frightening to small grandchildren, making them more likely to approach Grandma or Grandpa the way they did before the senior started using a wheelchair. They come in many different animal shapes, including ducks, hippos, lions, and dogs.
#4: Attach a Canopy
Some companies make canopies that can be attached to a wheelchair to put a cover over the senior’s head that protects them from rain and sun. They can be attached to nearly any wheelchair and taken off when the older adult goes inside.
#5: Apply a Fresh Coat of Paint
Caregivers can assist seniors to freshen up an older wheelchair by giving it a fresh coat of paint. Or, you can have the chair professionally painted. Either way, the older adult can choose from a wide variety of colors and finishes. They might even want to use a combination of colors.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE IS CONSIDERING CAREGIVERS IN RALEIGH, NC, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT SENIORS HELPING SENIORS TODAY. CALL (919) 761-5346.