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How Drive Walkers Can Substitute for Human Assistance

Many older adults seek human assistance because of their difficulties in doing everyday tasks. Drive walkers are technological advances that can substitute human assistance.

There are 2 forms of coping for mobility limitations: human assistance and technological assistance. Human assistance refers to help receive from another person. This assistance can be from a relative, friend or paid caregiver. Technological assistance, on the other hand, refers to the use of assistive devices like the use of drive walkers.

Both human and technological assistance have these advantages:
-They reduce the severity of disability.
-They reduce the task demand.
-They solve problems related to social, mental and physical functioning.

Drive Walkers

Studies (LaPlante et al. and Kaye et al.) found that technological assistance like those from drive walkers has increased at a much higher rate as the older population increased.

Here are the top reasons why technological assistance like those from drive walkers is more advantageous than human assistance:

  1. Encourages independence
    Human assistance only creates dependency on another person. Technological assistance, on the other hand, encourages autonomy and self-sufficiency.
  2. Cost-effective
    A study by Hoenig et al. showed that people who do not use technological assistance report about 4 more hours of help each week compared with those who do use assistive devices. The Hoenig et al. study also found that there is a clear support to the idea that technological assistance might substitute human assistance.
  3. Prevents and alleviates dysfunctions
    A study by Fozard et al. showed that technological advances like the drive walkers not only alleviate dysfunctions, but they also prevent dysfunctions.

Standard walkers like the drive walkers have come a long way. They have improved aesthetic designs. They are also easy to use. Walkers are categorized based on absence or number of wheels. The standard walkers have no wheels. Those with wheels can have two, three or four wheels.

A walker is ideal for you if you can show that you can do the following:
-Walk on your own;
-You need support on both sides of the body; and
-You have good hand and arm functions.

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