How to prevent problems with crutches

man-crutches

If you or a loved one has recently been put on crutches, there are many questions you may have about this simple daily living aid. As well known as crutches are, it is important to know how to use them correctly in order to avoid making injuries worse or creating new ones.

When used the wrong way, crutches can actually cause a lot of problems, but all the problems are completely unnecessary and very preventable. Let’s take a look at common crutch problems and how not to learn from them the hard way.

Nerve damage

Avoid leaning on the tops of the crutches with your armpit. Crutches almost always have underarm pads, but the reality is that these can cause pain and nerve damage affecting the entire arm. Instead of leaning on them, place your wait on your hands and as much weight as you can safely place on your injured foot.

However, there may be times when you do not have enough strength to maintain this posture, in which case it is good to be prepared. The Crutch Mate Gel Arm Pads are made of glycerin gel that will gently pad the area underneath the arm and help prevent pressure sores and skin abrasions.

Falls

Be sure to lead with your injured foot and the crutches while placing all or most of your wait on the crutches, depending on your doctor’s recommendation. The key is to bring your injured leg forward without actually placing weight on it. Not bringing your injured leg forward will prevent a natural, fluid gait, causing you be more likely to fall down.

For even greater protection against slipping and falling, consider a replacement tip for your crutches. Called the Ingrid, this crutches tip is made of tire tread-like material to prevent slipping.

Hand pain

Crutches come with a handle for your palms, located about midway down the crutches. You need to get crutches with handles that are at waste level and that will allow you to have a slight bend in your elbows when holding the crutches standing up. If the handle is too high, you will strain your arms and hands, and if the handle is too low, you will be forced to put pressure under your armpits, which should be strictly avoided.

Consider taking some of the stress off your hands with the Crutch Mate Gel Hand Pads, which can be placed on the crutch handles.

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