When our patients have back pain it affects more than just their physical bodies. It’s a strain on their mental health too.
Back pain can be caused by a strain, such as lifting something too heavy or moving too quickly at a certain angle. Poor posture can also contribute to back pain, especially if they are sitting down most of the day (like in an office job, or when in a wheelchair).
Here are a few tips to help prevent back pain in our wheelchair-bound patients:
Patient body positioning
Before you buy any cushions or products to help prevent or ease back pain, look at how your patient is sitting in the chair. Encourage them to sit tall, align their spine with the back of the chair, and try to avoid slouching as much as possible. Head stabilizers are necessary for patients who have reduced upper body control.
Supporting your lumbar is a great next step to minimizing back pain for patients who are wheelchair-bound all or most of the day.
Ensure the arms of the wheelchair are ergonomically placed to minimize strain on their shoulders and back.
Dangling feet can cause a strain on your back. Ensure that your feet can be rested flat on the footrests. Here are a couple of foot support accessories for wheelchairs that we recommend.
Not many people want to sit on a hard seat all day. Depending on the type of support your patient needs, there are specially made wheelchair support cushions for your needs.
Between educating your patient on the most ergonomic ways to sit, showing them a few stretches they can do while sitting to increase circulation and encourage movement, and products specially made for wheelchairs, you can do your part to help your patients avoid back pain and heal faster.
To talk with a wheelchair comfort specialist about the different products available for wheelchair patients, contact our local team today.