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What is a disability?
A condition (such as an illness or an injury) that damages or limits a person’s physical or mental abilities.
Children with special needs require the use of mobility devices that assist them with their daily activities. Convaid lightweight wheelchairs are specifically designed to promote independence for both users and families. Below we describe the physical disabilities and conditions for which Convaid’s push wheelchairs would be ideal. Please always consult with your medical provider to discuss the right push wheelchair for you. The below list is not complete and there are many other kids with special needs who could benefit from Convaid wheelchairs. These are only recommendations and are not meant to prescribe the chair for you.
This disease appears during the first few years of life and affects a child’s ability to coordinate body movements. Cerebral Palsy (CP) can cause muscles to be weak and floppy, or rigid and stiff. Symptoms may include lack of muscle coordination, exaggerated reflexes (spasticity), tremors, and difficulties with precise motions. Wheelchairs with 30-degree fixed tilt, such as the Cruiser, with a headrest and h-harness are suited for someone with weak trunk muscles, who needs assistance to sit upright. Some suggested push wheelchairs for children with Cerebral Palsy would include the Convaid Cruiser, EZ Rider or Rodeo. For further information on Cerebral Palsy, please visit the Cerebral Palsy Foundation website at www.ucp.org.
Autism is a neurodevelopment disorder that first appears during infancy or childhood, and generally follows a steady course without remission. It is distinguished by a characteristic set of symptoms, which include impairments in social interaction & communication, restricted interests and repetitive behavior. Individuals who are at the lower-functioning end of the spectrum, are often runners, or can be described as in their “own world”. Upright wheelchairs, like the EZ Rider, that have a safety seatbelt, are perfect chairs for parents to keep their child safe at all times. For further information on Autism, please visit the Autism Society of America website at www.autism-society.org.
A genetic disorder that affects the way the brain develops. Rett syndrome occurs almost exclusively in girls, and the symptoms are similar to those of autism. In addition, children with Rett Syndrome have problems with motor function, which may affect their ability to use their hands, legs, walk, talk, chew food and breathe. Tilt-in-space wheelchairs, like the Rodeo, with the capability to recline can be repositioned as needed to help with breathing problems, and to deter seizures. For further information on Rett’s Syndrome, please visit the International Rett Syndrome Foundation website at www.rettsyndrome.org.
A genetic disorder that causes developmental disabilities and neurological problems, such as difficulty speaking, moving, balancing walking and, in some cases, seizures. Frequent smiles and outbursts of laughter are common for people with Angelman syndrome, and many have happy, excitable personalities. A 30-degree fixed tilt wheelchair, like the Cruiser, with an h-harness and 3-point positioning belt is suitable for Angelman syndrome. When the child is able to sit upright an EZ Rider might do. In more severe cases, a Rodeo could be considered as well.
Spina bifida is part of a group of birth defects called neural tube defects. In babies with spina bifida, a portion of the neural tube fails to develop or close properly, causing defects in the spinal cord and in the bones of the backbone. In the most severe cases, loss of movement (paralysis) is common. The child may have bowel and bladder problems, seizures and other medical complications. Depending on the severity of Spina Bifida, an upright wheelchair, like the EZ Rider, a fixed-tilt wheelchair, such as the Cruiser, or a tilt-in-space wheelchair, like the Rodeo, would suit this condition.
Muscular dystrophy (MD) is made up of a group of more than 30 inherited diseases that cause muscle weakness and muscle loss. Muscular dystrophy can appear at almost any age, depending on the type. And it is a progressive disease – all forms of Muscular dystrophy grow worse as the person’s muscles get weaker. The symptoms vary greatly, and include poor balance, difficulty walking, limited movement, muscles wasting away, and respiratory problems. Most people with Muscular dystrophy eventually lose the ability to walk, and will permanently need a wheelchair to get about. Upright wheelchairs, like the EZ Rider, are the perfect solution for someone with the above Muscular dystrophy symptoms. When the person is able to sit up by themselves, the EZ Rider Convertible would be an ideal solution as well. For further information about Muscular Dystrophy, please visit the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) website at www.mda.org.
Kyphosis, Scoliosis and Lordosis
Conditions where the trunk is curved forward, to the side, or inward. With these conditions, trunk support is needed for the individual to sit upright. Positioning options, such as the torso vest, lateral supports, and h-harness, will promote optimal trunk posture. Optimal trunk posture and rotation will increase comfort, enhance respiration & digestion, maintain line of vision, prevent forward slumping, and improve sitting balance. A fixed-tilt wheelchair, such as the Cruiser, or a tilt-in-space wheelchair, like the Rodeo, would be a good fit fir these conditions.
The name of this disorder literally means “curved or hooked joint”. Arthrogryposis is a rare congenital disorder that is characterized by shortening of the joints, muscle weakness and development of excess fibrous connective tissue. In the most common type of Arthrogryposis, hands wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, feet and knees are affected. In the most severe types, nearly every joint is involved, including the jaw and back. A 30-degree fixed tilt wheelchair, like the Cruiser, along with a positioning belt, support cushion, leg length discrepancy, and angle adjustable footplates, is appropriate for this condition.