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Information on Mobility Aids and Ambulation Devices

Disabled World: Revised/Updated: 2018/09/22

Synopsis: An overview of mobility aids for seniors and persons with disabilities including manual and electric wheelchairs and motorized scooters.

Main Document

Reduced mobility is something that many of us do not think twice about, but it is something that millions of people all over the world live with everyday. There are of people in the world who suffer from disabilities on a level that few of us could imagine. With the aging of the baby boomers comes the realization that the growth of people with disabilities will continue to increase year by year.

What is a Mobility Aid or Device?

A mobility aid is a device designed to assist walking or otherwise improve the mobility of people with a mobility impairment.

There are various walking aids which can help people with impaired ability to walk and wheelchairs or mobility scooters for more severe disability or longer journeys which would otherwise be undertaken on foot.

For people who are blind or visually impaired the white cane and guide dog have a long history of use. Other aids can help with mobility or transfer within a building or where there are changes of level.

Mobility Concerns

An elderly woman stands next to a person in a wheelchair near a green grassy field - Photo by Josh Appel on Unsplash.
An elderly woman stands next to a person in a wheelchair near a green grassy field - Photo by Josh Appel on Unsplash.

Many people with disabilities have a major concern, the mobility issue. Plainly put, 'how are they going to get around'? Through technology there has been the creation of mobility aids like electric wheelchairs, lift vans, and rollators.

Mobility Aids for persons with disabilities and/or health conditions, also called Ambulation devices, are used by people with arthritis, MS, Parkinson's disease, back pain, Cerebral Palsy, and many other physical limiting conditions. Mobility aids help you walk or move from place to place if you are disabled, aged, or have an injury. Mobility aids include items such as walkers, canes, crutches, manual and electric wheelchairs and motorized scooters.

Walking aids are tools designed to assist walking or enable mobility. You may need a walker or cane if you are at risk of falling. Zimmer frames, and wheeled (rolling) walkers or rollators are other devices designed to assist people having difficulty walking.

Elbow crutches can be the most appropriate walking aid for some people, especially for those recovering from an injury. They are usually adjustable to make them more comfortable and offer the right level of support. Crutches may be available in different colors, depending on the model. If you need to keep your body weight off your foot, ankle or knee, you may need crutches. You may need a wheelchair or a scooter if an injury or disease has left you unable to walk.

Statistics for U.S. Mobility Device Users

Further References

Associated Sub-Topics and Pertinent Documents

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