Life will always come with unavoidable and unexpected circumstances. Whether it be an emotional breakdown or a physical accident, you keep going knowing that with a little time and support from loved ones, you will heal and be renewed once again! Here at Priceline West Brunswick, we got you covered! Should you find yourself coming out of the hospital with a cast on either leg or just after a hip surgery, the folks here at the pharmacy got just what you need:
Crutches for hire in West Brunswick
Here at Priceline Pharmacy, We have two types available for you: Bariatric (for forearms) and Standard (for underarms). If you wish to rent them, the Bariatric crutches would have a deposit of $80, while the Standard crutches would have a deposit of $70. It would also cost a $14 to have either one of them rented per week.
Preparing your surroundings for Crutches
Living with crutches, although aids in your movement, could still potentially be hazardous for you. A new addition to your daily routine with an underprepared household could cause you to slip or mess up your home, especially since you still aren’t used to the crutches! Here are a few things you can do ready your home for your new walking aid:
- Clear the floors and the stairs of clutter! Set aside rugs, electrical cords, slippery spills or anything that could cause you to slide
- Make a path! Be sure there is enough space for you to move around, considering the wider space you could take up carrying your crutches
- Keep it lit! Walking in the dark without your crutches could already cause accidents, what more with something you can’t fully control
- Make things easy to reach and spill free! Add rubber to the bottom of cups, bowls and containers, and keep them in areas that are easily accessible
- Carry a bag! Your arms will be full during your time with your crutches, so make use of body bags, backpacks or fanny packs to be able to hold your things without your hands
What do Crutches do?
They basically have two functions:
- Reduces weight load on your lower extremities or lower half of your body
- Gives you a steadier base for balance and stability
Crutches are used by those who have trouble walking due to pain, loss of one limb, weak muscles or instability of the lower extremities. Making use of your hands and arms to walk gives you certain sensory cues which can aid your movement as well. This will also keep you in an upright position and give you more mobility as compared to using a wheelchair. An upright position can even help circulation, kidney and lung function and prevent loss of calcium in bones.
Types of Crutches
There are many types of crutches being developed nowadays, but let’s focus on the two that are available at the pharmacy. When choosing the right type for you, make sure to fit it before renting to avoid further development of movement problems.
Standard Crutch (Axillary Crutch)
These are the most common and well-known type of crutches. Most are made of wood or lightweight aluminum. It follows a misconception that when using these crutches, the top should rest on the top; however, to effectively use them, they should be placed 5 cm below the axilla, giving way for the elbows to be flexed at a 15 – 30-degree angle. There are two lengths to consider when getting fitted: the overall height and the arm height. The overall height should be enough to give you support when walking and adequate space for you to move around. The arm height should be long enough for you to be able to maneuver them well and shouldn’t cause you any discomfort. If they are too long, making it difficult for you to stand upright, subtract 16m from your height in centimeters, and use that value to determine the perfect crutch length for you.
These crutches have the same configuration as standard crutches, only they are made of a heavier duty material: steel. They are made such that to support heftier individuals who need more support than the wooden ones.
How to Use Them
Ideally, crutches are chosen over wheelchairs to give its user more freedom to move; however, either one leg should be healthy or both legs should still be able to provide some sort of support. Otherwise, it would be even more difficult for the user to move around and make his/her situation more burdensome.
- Shift your weight to your healthier and better functioning leg
- Position both crutches in front of you, on an area you feel the most stable
- Swing your entire body forward using your arms, transferring the weight from your leg to your upper body
- Plant your healthy leg in front of you, keeping stable and shifting the weight from your arms back to your legs
- Repeat steps 1 – 4
To properly and comfortably position yourself with your crutches, you must take note of the following:
- The handgrips should be parallel to the hipline and elbows should be bent
- NEVER use your armpits for support! Use the handgrips! This will prevent damage to the nerves and blood vessels in the armpit area
- You can purchase covers or cushions to be placed on the underarm areas for more comfort
- Using one crutch, place the crutches on the side of your weaker leg
For more casual and natural movement, keep these tips in mind when walking:
- Take your time! Moving too quickly or planting the crutches too far from you could cause unnecessary accidents. Always keep them close to your body
- Maximize the swing! Create momentum and avoid applying unnecessary pressure on either your legs and arms
- Face forward, not down!
There is a certain technique you can use to be able to sit down gracefully without slipping. Let me tell you how:
- Put your weak leg in front of you, support yourself with your healthy leg, and carry both crutches with the arm opposite your injured leg
- Lower yourself into a chair. You may use the crutches for support
- Once seated, invert your crutches over and have them lean on a nearby area. Crutches right side up tend to fall over
To get back up, be at the edge of the chair, holding both crutches on the side of your injured leg and push yourself up from your seat making sure you land on your good leg when you’re upright.
To stand up, inch yourself to the front of the chair. Hold them both in the hand on your injured side. Push yourself up and stand on your good leg.
As much as possible, should your building have escalators or elevators, take those instead. You could lose balance on stairs if you climb them without someone assisting you. If you’re climbing up the stairs, step with your good leg first before bringing your crutches. If you’re climbing down the stairs, bring them down first, then your legs.
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