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10 Wheelchair Accessories to Increase Comfort and Improve Mobility

wheelchair accessories

Marc Kaplan |

Did you know that nearly 7 million Americans need help with their mobility? Of the 7 million, over 1 million of them use wheelchairs to assist them with getting around.

Only those who've needed wheelchairs can understand the challenges one faces daily.

Getting from point A to point B is only half of the struggle. The ease of what so many are able to do on a daily basis is something many folks take for granted. Those in wheelchairs have to work twice as hard to accomplish even the most basic of tasks.

Both manual and electric wheelchair users face these challenges. Luckily, wheelchair accessories make it easier for people to do more than just get around. They can help ease some of the pressures and challenges of accomplishing basic tasks... and so much more.

In this article, we'll explore 10 wheelchair attachments and accessories. We'll also discuss how these innovative wheelchair solutions can help you - in both big and small ways.

Let's get started!

1. Cushions

The objective of wheelchair cushions is to reduce pressure and provide maximum comfort. However, not all wheelchair cushions are the same... and this not only boils down to the material.

Wheelchair cushions vary according to one's height. They also depend on the type of wheelchair, as well as what sorts of activities one will do.

Regardless, wheelchair cushions are one of the most important wheelchair accessories... and the choices in cushions are endless.

Foam cushions provide optimal comfort in nearly all situations and activities. The only downside to them is that they wear easily. It's important to mix and match your collection of cushions and switch yours out from time to time.

Gel cushions, for example, are great for those who get sore and stiff from sitting for long periods of time. They're also helpful to those who have atrophied muscles.

There are pressure reduction cushions, urethane cushions, and so many more.

2. Backrests

Exercising and stretching can help alleviate back pain associated with wheelchair use. Using a backrest can also make a big difference in one's comfort levels.

A standard wheelchair without a backrest keeps a person in one position. This not only causes uncomfortable strain but can hinder one's posture.

But with a backrest, one can change up their posture and seating position. This helps to alleviate any stress to their back in the process.

Backrests come in a variety of materials and contour depths. The width and support height of your backrest will depend on the type of postural support you need. Some also come with headrest extensions.

3. Brake Extensions

Do you or your loved one have trouble reaching your brakes?

This is a common problem that people in wheelchairs face. Standard wheelchair brakes tend to be too short for many users.

Luckily, brake extensions are one of the most innovative wheelchair solutions around. They allow users to break more easily. Even if you don't have this problem, it still helps to have extensions on hand should you ever have trouble.

4. Wheelchair Ramps

Wheelchair ramps are among the most important wheelchair attachments. They can make all the difference in one's mobility.

Most stores and public spaces are legally obligated to provide wheelchair ramps, but when it comes to your own home, you may need to pay for some of the installation costs out-of-pocket. If you're alone most of the time, at-home ramps are a must.

Luckily, there's a market for portable wheelchair ramps. They're super lightweight, and make it easy for you to bring it around. They also support high weight capacities, giving you ease of mind - no matter where you go.

5. Wheelchair Organizers

Keys. Wallet. Laptop. Briefcase.

There's no limit to the types of things we need to carry and transport on a regular basis. For someone in a wheelchair, being able to carry everything can be a challenge.

Organizers are typically made with several zipper compartments. They can attach to the back or side of a wheelchair. Whatever small to medium-sized items you need to carry around, an organizer can help big time.

6. LED Lights

It's tough for even a person with 20/20 vision to see in the dark. For someone in a wheelchair, it's all the more challenging to see and get around at night.

LED lights can make all the difference at nighttime. It's possible to attach them onto the wheels or the chair itself. With the click of a button, a person in a wheelchair will be able to see better in the dark.

For maximum mobility, it helps to have white LED lights in the front and red in the back. This lets bystanders know when you're about to back up or turn.

Light up casters for your wheels also make great wheelchair accessories. Plus, they come in a variety of colors, which will allow you to personalize your wheelchair!

7. Gloves

For those who use a manual wheelchair, it's common to experience hand callouses. With all the constant pressure and abrasion, gloves are a big help.

Specialized gloves for wheelchair users protect their hands from abrasions. They also provide support for the hands, making it easier to get around faster and pain-free.

8. Rear Scooter Baskets

For those in power scooters, rear baskets provide optimal storage space... which can come in handy when it times to run errands.

Rear baskets tend to be more durable than front baskets. This makes them especially useful for carrying heavier items and boxes.

9. Wheelchair Trays

When it comes to eating, writing, or reading a book, sometimes you won't want to scoot all the way to a table.

With a wheelchair tray, you'll be able to eat, write, and set your coffee down - worry free. The best part? They're made for both electric and manual wheelchairs!

10. Wheelchair Slippers

Your wheelchair tires will trek in a lot of dirt and debris from outside. So, when the time comes to go inside your home, cover your wheels with slippers.

Cleaning is all the more challenging for those in wheelchairs. The less mess, the better. And wheelchair slippers can help reduce messes and cleanup time.

Increase Your Mobility & Comfort with Wheelchair Accessories

Wheelchair attachments and accessories make all the difference in one's mobility and comfort. With these 10 wheelchair accessories, you or your loved one will be well on the way to maximum mobility.

In addition to wheelchair products, are you also in the market for other medical supplies? If so, browse for items and supplies by category with Save Rite!

Further Reading

Mobility Device Statistics: United States

Mobility impairment in the elderly

Aspects of Manual Wheelchair Configuration Affecting Mobility