It is a detail that can not be overlooked. A wheelchair’s overall comfort is dictated by the seat cushion. The proper seat cushion provides relief from pressure and helps a person position him or herself in such a way that fatigue is reduced and posture is protected along the spine.
When you go to choose a seat cushion choose it based on the level of comfort it provides, the ability of the cushion to provide pressure management, and its ability to allow proper seating stability. There are several different kinds of cushions to choose from and they each offer varying degrees of support and comfort.
In general, you can choose from foam, gel or air cushions. Each has its advantages and disadvantages so it is important to test each type out before settling on the one for your wheelchair.
Foam cushions are the most affordable types. They usually have a single-density form which means that they do not offer a variation on firmness. These are best for anyone who wants to spend less money on the chair. If it will only be used for a short time, this may be a good cushion to choose. It offers a stable seating position, and it is easy to maintain.
Also, before we forget to address it. Make sure you address other problems with sitting and posture.
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If you require more advanced positioning and greater pressure relief, you will want to opt for a gel cushion. These cushions have contoured based and can offer greater pressure relief and more ways to position them to offer greater comfort. These are also low-cost cushions.
Air cushions are your next option. These are more expensive. However, they have the ability to be adjusted as to the cushion’s firmness. These cushions are the best for relieving pressure and offering the most comfort and seating stability. They do require maintenance from time to time.
Whichever seat cushion you choose, be aware that all types will need to be replaced after about two or three years. Make sure to choose a cushion that measures exactly the same size as the wheelchair’s seat. Remember that the thicker a cushion is the less room a person will have when seated in the chair to fit under desks or tables comfortably.
Maintenance for the foam and gel cushions is minimal, but you will want to inspect these cushions regularly to make sure there is no damage. If there is, these will need to be replaced.