Wheelchair Seating Products Overview
The wheelchair seating products category encompass quite a large number of products which are designed for the comfort, posture control, pressure control and stability of the chair user. These products can range from quite inexpensive to quite expensive but the adage "you get what you pay for" applies here maybe more than other products.
Comfort, of course, is an important feature to wheelchair users. Sitting in an uncomfortable wheelchair all day is not something anyone would want to do. There are a variety of seating products designed for comfort for a relatively low price.
Posture control is another function of seating systems. Good posture aids in comfort as well as pressure control and stability. Many seating products have built-in and/or optional components to aid in posture control available. Products that provide posture control tend to be more expensive than basic comfort products but not prohibitively so.
Pressure relief is a terribly important issue for many wheelchair users. People who don't have feeling in areas where pressure exists, can't weight shift or are incontinent are at risk for pressure sores. Pressure sores are areas where blood flow is restricted due to a combination of pressure, heat and moisture which causes the tissue to actually die. Untreated, a pressure sore will grow in size and become a serious health issue. Pressure sores can cost thousands of dollars and take many months to cure, during which time the user usually will be bedridden.
Stability is needed by wheelchair users in order to drive their power chair, propel their manual chair and perform daily living activities. Seating products can aid in stabilizing the wheelchair user.
There are many products that can make up a seating system but normally the user will only order the individual products needed to achieve the results required. In addition to a cushion and backrest a seating system can include a seat belt, a shoulder harness, a headrest, lateral supports, a seat belt, a chest strap, a pommel and a few other items.