Keeping warm in your wheelchair - why it matters
Although wheelchairs provide you with invaluable mobility and comfort, you can be more susceptible to drops in temperature, or even feel the chill in a reasonably heated room.
The main reason for this is that you are sitting still for extended periods, so the normal body heat generated by body and limb movement and physical exertion is not the same for a wheelchair user.
Core temperature can drop quite quickly when you’re a wheelchair user, and it can sometimes take a long time, just to feel warm again, as your deep tissue temperature can be lower than it should be and naturally takes time to return to a normal warm body temperature.
There is a strong link between cold temperature and potential circulation problems, often in the lower limbs, which can go on to cause sometimes serious health complications if the wheelchair user often goes for longer periods of sitting in less than optimal temperatures.
Aside from any health reasons, just from a comfort perspective, it makes sense for wheelchair users to be equipped for coping with lower temperatures, especially those that can be encountered when going outdoors, or travelling, or even just for when an indoor room feels a bit chilly.
The good news is that there is a plethora of products for you as a wheelchair user, to help you stay warm and be adaptable for different situations. With the right gear, feeling cold in your wheelchair shouldn’t be something you need to be concerned about.
A Wheelchair Blanket is a great idea for ensuring you’re cosy on your wheelchair, and this model is for both indoor and outdoor use. The shape and dimensions of the wheelchair blanket are designed so they don’t get caught in the wheels or workings of the wheelchair when in use. Although a simple idea, the wheelchair blanket, with it’s soft fleece lining promotes enhanced comfort and warmth, so being an invaluable aid to complement any wheelchair.
For lower-limb, feet and toe warmth, nothing is better suited to the task than the Cosy Toes. This innovative design is for both ladies and gents and is ideally suited to lock in warmth, with its THERMA-FLEECE lining keeping cold, moisture and showers away from the skin while keeping the lower limb and foot temperature at warm levels, the equivalent of fireside comfort, right on your wheelchair. Once you’re zipped in, the Cosy Toes protects body warmth and promotes better circulation. the ideal complement to your wheelchair.
Another great product which is as warm, cosy and luxurious as it looks, is the Wheelchair Cosy this fully waterproof, fully fleeced line enclosure gives the ultimate protection against cold, draughts and chills and is Ideal for use in conjunction with the Wheelchair Poncho for the ultimate cold/ wet weather protection.
Further comfort is provided by the Wheelchair Cosy being breathable, so moisture form the skin is wicked away, so promoting greater comfort and warmth when in your wheelchair for longer periods. Great for outings, shopping trips or even for holidays abroad or cruises, the Wheelchair Cosy is also great value for the additional warmth and protection it provides. See further details on the Wheelchair Cosy here
For users with longer limbs, there is the Wheelchair Cosy - Long, this model has extra leg length accommodated with a length of 1400mm (57") See all the details of the Wheelchair Cosy - Long here
So what about when you’re travelling outdoors and you need that all-weather protection, warmth and dry comfort? The Lined Wheelchair Poncho provides the ideal solution. This fully lined and breathable poncho protects you and importantly, your wheelchair through all adverse weather conditions. This Lined Deluxe Wheelchair Poncho is fully lined and made from 100% waterproof fabric to keep the elements out, while keeping the warmth and comfort safely locked in. Lightweight and compact, you’ll find this wheelchair poncho positions and fits easily, with minimum hassle or inconvenience, meaning you’re more likely to want to go on those outdoor shopping trips and leisure outings, knowing you have the right gear for it the weather turns. The snug fitting hood and drawstring means the discomfort of rain and wind on the head and face is greatly reduced making for a much more pleasant outdoor experience, whatever the weather. The extra length of the poncho provides additional protection to the legs and feet further promoting warmth and better lower-limb circulation. Fully sealed seams give the additional water-proofing for even the most rainy and windy conditions.
Often neglected, the hands can be an area of discomfort when colder temperatures as can be experienced outdoors and it’s so unnecessary when great products like the Cosy Hand Warmers are available to keep in the warmth and comfort, whilst locking out the cold. This product is shown in Maroon and is the ideal complement to the Cosy Toes at the top of this article. The Cosy Hand Warmers has a quilted outer, therma-fleece lining and elasticated cuffs keeping your hands in ultimate comfort whatever the weather throws at you! Cosy Hand Warmers also come with a convenient neck cord, so you won’t be in danger of losing your hand warmers even if you temporarily take them off.
The items above can help a great deal in protecting you from the cold weather and add the peace of mind that your circulation is not being compromised by a sustained drop in body temperature. These are just a few items selected from our comprehensive range of wheelchair clothing and cold-weather protection, take a look at the extensive list of products in our wheelchair clothing range here
We hope you’ll take the opportunity to get out and about more during the colder winter months. Although it can be cold and wet, there are some lovely things to see and experience as the seasons change to spring from winter.
As a wheelchair user, comfort and warmth are just about a little preparation and forward planning to ensure you’re fully prepared for the elements. Always check the weather forecast if you’re likely to be out for longer spells and err on the side of warmth and comfort.