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When clients who cannot independently shift their position spend extended hours in a wheelchair, discomfort is a serious issue. With tilt-in-space wheelchairs, the design provides the opportunity to change the angle of recline, support the core of the body, raise legs for relief from edema, provide relief for a constant pressure on the spine and help reduce respiration problems caused by pressure on the lungs and other organs. The design of a tilt-in-space wheelchair allows a change in position, up to one-third of the angle of the trunk, as well as angled seats to prevent forward sliding and shifting. For those individuals who cannot maintain pelvic or trunk position or maintain head position or balance, the tilt-in-space wheelchair can provide relief from the problems associated with immobility. The design of tilt-in-space wheelchairs helps to provide a shift in pressure for the legs, pelvis and back, and provides relief for the entire trunk. This can relieve pain caused by scoliosis (curvature of the spine), pressure on the lungs and all other internal organs. For clients who have muscular dystrophy and other neuromuscular diseases, the ability to shift position helps to relive pain caused by the long-term sitting in a single position.
Benefits of tilt-in-space wheelchairs
Being able to shift weight in a wheel chair is more than about comfort, though. The conditions that can result from the inability to shift weight in your wheelchair include edema (the swelling of the extremities, particularly the legs and feet) and a greater risk of skin breakdown. Postural collapse is also a potential complication, with consequent possibility of postural hypotension as well as respiratory and digestive difficulties. With tilt-in-space wheelchairs, the ability to raise legs above the heart, to recline to an angle that opens up the degree between the seat and the back or to shift hip position can be both a relief from discomfort and a way to reduce pressure on the internal organs. Many designs of tilt-in-place wheelchairs offer an opportunity for relief of discomfort as well as a decrease of pressure on the body. Many of these chairs are light and portable, offering a greater mobility in travel.