All About Crutches & the Accessories You Need
If you have recently inured yourself or gone through surgery and require the use of crutches to get around, you may understand how cumbersome inconvenient they may be to use.
Luckily, there are may different crutches on the market to meet your needs, as well as a wide variety of accessories that can make your experience with your crutches much more positive.
The Different Kinds of Crutches
Depending on your injury, body type and personal activity level, you may require a specific type of crutch. Getting fitted for your crutches is vital and always consult with your healthcare provider about any concerns you may have regarding your pair of crutches before you purchase a set.
- This form of crutch is the most popular type and adjusts to your height while sitting beneath your armpits. Your hands are placed on the support halfway down the crutch, allowing you to control the crutch’s movement and direction.
Forearm crutch (Lofstrand crutch)
- This form of crutch places greater weight directly on your forearms, as the cuff of the crutch should sit about 4cm below the back of your elbow. While this is the most common crutch in Europe, only those with lifelong disabilities in North America tend to use this crutch.
Leg support crutches
- This form of crutch consists of a knee support, allowing a leg to be strapped onto a support frame with wheels. This crutch is most common for those who want to remain mobile but have undergone under the knee injuries or surgeries.
Accessories for Your Crutches
While crutches can be extremely helpful in allowing you to remain mobile, they can be painful and difficult to maneuver at times. There are a wide variety of accessories that can be added onto your crutches to allow you to move around in comfort.
- Arm pads- When using an Axillary crutch, you may find that your armpits are becoming sore due to all the weight being placed there. It may be time to invest in some arm pads to take some pressure off of your armpits.
- Hand pads- Axillary pads can also place a lot of weight on the palms of your hands. There are many different hand pads, made of various gels and foams that can be added onto the hand support of your crutch to keep your palms from getting sore.
- Gel forearm pads- For users of forearm crutches, you may tend to experience pain directly in your forearms due to all the pressure and weight. Soft forearm pads can keep some of the weight off of your arms and ensure you can move without discomfort.
- Crutch tip with spikes- If you are going to be using crutches during the winter, you may want to consider new rubber crutch tips with a retractable spike. This will allow you to continue to move in comfort outside, without fear of slipping and falling in harsh winter conditions.
- Decorative crutch covers- Have fun with your crutches! Using crutches doesn’t have to be bland and boring. There are a wide variety of decorative crutch covers for the arm and hand pads, which can allow you to decorate and personalize your crutches.