This is the second is a series about your medical devices. Last article, we spoke of tricking out (decorating) your walker (see IFS Blog “Tricking Out Walkers”). Today, we will focus on walker maintenance, that is, how to make sure your walker stays in top notch condition.
Since your walker is as important to you as a car ever was, physical therapist agree that you should make sure it is maintained and in top notch condition.
Problems that can arise with a walker that is not in good condition may be:
as simple as it taking more energy to get around or
as complex as affecting body alignment.
Some problem signs to look out for in your walker are:
Worn glides or skis on a walker may catch on a carpet fiber that can cause you to fall
Are there squeaks or funny noises?
Is it more difficult to handle?
Does the walker go forward just fine, but not backward?
Worn tips on the walker (or cane for that matter).
Note: if you have a Rollator walker, be sure to check that the nuts and bolts are tight as well as making certain the brakes are adjusted from time to time.
ACCESSORIZING YOUR WALKER IS ALSO GOOD WALKER MAINTENANCE
When you purchase a walker it doesn’t come with all the things you would reasonably need. Since both your hands will be occupied you will have a need to carry your belongings.
This is where a walker pouch or basket comes in handy.
Also, you will probably need a cup holder for your drinks and a tray to carry your meals to the table.
Having a walker with a cane clip is also a good idea, since walkers are sometimes impractical when trying to get into certain places. If you always carry your cane, you will be able to have the support you need handy.
Lastly, be sure to store your walker indoors and cover it to prevent dust build up if not used for a long period of time.
CLEANING YOUR WALKER IS PART OF WALKER MAINTENCE
Cleaning your walker is also a part of walker maintenance. Here are a few tips for cleaning your device:
Never use bleach on any part of your walker
Wipe plastic or metal parts with a damp cloth then immediately dry.
Machine wash on cold all removable fabric parts of your walker
Clean grip strips with water only, then dry immediately
Just remember, medical devices are not meant to last forever. As with all things in life, your device will last longer and give you better service if you take good care of it.
Here is a Youtube video that shows you how to clean and maintain your walker:
GOOD IDEA HERE: Don’t wait for something to happen. Speak to your physician or therapist or a loved one and ask them to check out your medical device.
★ Call Missy Donaghy for a FREE consultation 321-279-3301.