Make your home wheelchair accessible
I’m going to share with you how to make your house more wheelchair friendly .
Get a Wheelchair Ramp
You should invest in a good wheelchair ramp. It will save you a ton of money if you opt for a wheelchair ramp instead of getting into constructing the area near your house entrance.
There are lots of portable wheelchair ramp easily available on Amazon.
Take off the bathroom doors if required
The first thing we noticed we needed to do was to take off the bathroom doors because the walker needed to get through the bathroom door.
The wheelchair got through the bathroom door fine, it was narrow enough but we had to take off the doors to the bathroom for the walker to get through.
We’re going to split your house into four stations. The first one being base camp. By base camp, we mean the base area where your family member is going to be for most of the day.
That’s where they can still do their work and get stuff done during the day, so you have your chair, where they’re going to prop their leg up or get in whatever position they need to be in.
Keep your important belongings near your eyesight
You have an end table over here and then you start thinking about what am I going to need during the day. My cell phone and my home phone and my laptop, the three most important things in every person’s day.
Now. you’re also going to need like Bank stuff things that they can take care of with their bank, their purse, their wallet access to cash, access to credit cards during the day. A craft that they’re going to want to work on.
There weren’t any Kleenexes lotions so you’re going to need a place to store your medicine. You might need a place for your medicine at your nighttime station as well, but a place for your medicine.
Some kind of water containers like the metal aluminum cups or a water bottle if you’re going to be walking back rolling back and forth.
A water bottle is a good thing that you can stuff into parts of a wheelchair. We realized after about a week, that you’re going to need the antibacterial sanitizer because when you come in from the doctor’s office you go straight to your chair, because you need to get that leg popped up or in a certain position and you forgot to wash your hands and you’re too tired to go all the way back to the bathroom and wash your hands.
This is highly recommended as you’re going to need a trashcan, you’re going to need notepads or paper and pen.
It’s good at an end table with drawers in them so that you can stuff some things in now let’s talk about all the things that will help you store all those things that you need at your base camp If one of our main concerns for our family member was safety.
If they fall while they’re transporting somewhere by themselves, they need a way to contact people and we use a lanyard that she just had around the house.
You can hold your cell phone, any medicine that you need, the remote control, the home phone and they’ll just always have it around their neck so that can hold even a pin. A writing pen and a little paper tablet can go in there.
Another item we thought about was a cat tower because you have the laptop, you have a box of Kleenexes that might not fit on this end table with everything else that you have there but a cat tower.
If you have anything like a ladder or step ladder that you can just set up and then also we decided to use a tray table because that gives you a wide base and surface area.
You can use another end table. You can use a chair, you can use an ottoman. Bring an ottoman over and just put it beside the chair.
Another item that we love is something we had around the house was a college lap board that you would use in college, but it’s got the squishy beanbag material underneath and then the heavy board up top. We use it as a tray table when she’s eating.
If you need a surface, write a note on into the great little circus thing and it’s heavy enough but it’s squishy so it is heavy enough to stand up when you’re leaning it down, you don’t want it on your lap anymore.
You want to lay it down and put it against the wall. Another key item that we found out we needed was power strips. You don’t realize how many power strips you have until you need a bunch of them, but we use a power strip and that helps you charge your phone, your computer, it helps you plug in your base home phone.
If you need a lamp, we recommend an overhead lamp so that it’s out of the way and you just have to reach up to turn on the lamp instead of taking up surface area.
If you do not have power strips available and you need to charge your phone and your laptop, you can charge your laptop with your one plug and then you can get one of these little cords.
I’ll link it below and Amazon prom. I also recommend it if you are traveling on an airplane since it plugs into your phone and then you plug this into your laptop and it will charge your cell phone.
It will charge your cell phone from this power. You just have to keep the laptop open and it’s charging your phone. You can put them both on your tray table and leave it there for 30 minutes and it’ll be fully charged.
Get a Backpack
So our first idea was to give the elderly a backpack to carry everything in. So you’ve got your backpack, you get in your wheelchair and then you’re ready to go to the next station for supper or to bed you have everything you need in your backpack.
That’s why a water bottle would be good but the backpacks are a little too big or they can’t fit on their back or they can’t move their arms enough to get the backpack on their back.
If you don’t want to buy anything then you can also use a grocery bag and how you would do that? if we try to top ends right here it’s not quite large enough so you just tie them together and it still gives you a pouch to put things in.
You would double tie it and you still have room to put things in. If you absolutely have to transport something in a bag and can’t use your hands, now what we do? we supplement the sides to when we’re going to another room.
You can stuff so many things down the sides but that’s just a handy-dandy quick hat for living with a wheelchair temporarily.
Okay if your family member has a walker, we highly recommend getting a basket that is made just for that Walker.
They do not fit like they’re not universal baskets, so make sure your basket will fit the model number of your Walker but that’s another way.
If your family member can walk on a walker, that’s an easy way to transport medicine, water bottles and stuff like that.
Don’t forget the toilet paper for the potty chair. We recommend having two baskets, one for dirty clothes and one for clean clothes.
We also recommend putting clothes on part of the bed so the when they are getting up in the morning they can get dressed in the clothes that are already there.
You might want to hang some of the shirts on the closet door because it’s a wheelchair height for them to get the shirts off in order to put them on in the morning.
We highly recommend the stand-up potty chair with a walker base but with no wheels under it.
It’s just like a walker but these walkers are so sturdy for balance and someone would clean out the bucket with some rubber gloves and some Clorox spray in the bathtub the next day or something like that.
What we like about the potty chair is it is right next to the bed so the person can stand up from the bed and then twist around to go to the potty without fear of falling.
One last point that I’m going to talk about is the kitchen. If your family member can get around the kitchen in a wheelchair, that is of course optimal.
We like to keep dishes that they will have access to on the counter height, so we get bowls plates, saucers mugs, water cups, fruit nuts, the coffee maker of course and oatmeal.
Some key points on flooring – floor coverings and doorways –
When you have someone in a wheelchair either visiting or on a more permanent basis and staying in your home,
one of the things is the problems with entering a bathroom, especially in a typical wheelchair.
The handles or the bars on the side that the person uses a grip on to are almost blocked by the doorway. So if you
had somebody visiting your home, you may want to remove the doorway itself or door itself to give them a little bit
more room to maneuver.
If it’s a permanent position and somebody’s gonna be at home for six months or a year,
you may want to look at the swing flat hinges or just widening the doorway to the bathroom.
Another issue about narrow doorways if the clearance between the doorway and your wheelchair is very narrow, then it is dangerous for your fingers to go through.
Another alternative to whining the doorway is to install swing free hinges thus eliminating the width of the door to give you plenty of extra space to wheel in.
So, another thing for wheelchairs at home are the different levels and types of flooring that you have in place. You
may throw a rug with a rubber back and that can be easy to maneuver over a carpet for somebody pushing the same
the thing with a wood floor
It’s easy when somebody is on a wheelchair, they move fairly easily across all the wood floors as they are more slippery and especially some of the people in wheelchairs use their feet to scoot along that becomes very hard for them to work on the plain wood floor.
Rolling over carpeting on a wheelchair can pose some difficulties because of the added cushion, you run into extra resistance making rolling a bit more challenging over carpeted areas.