Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disabling illness that attacks the central nervous system – covering the brain, optic nerves and spinal cord.
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, eighty percent of people with MS encounter have difficulties with walking within 10 to 15 years of the onset of the disease.
Symptoms of the MS include muscle weakness, loss of balance, poor coordination, numbness or tingling in the feet and legs, extreme fatigue, increased muscle tone or stiffness, impaired vision and cognitive difficulties.
All of the above-mentioned symptoms – most importantly fatigue– can increase the risk of falls, this according to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
The concerned organization suggested that a mobility aid such as the lightweight walkers may be used when therapy does not improve walking to a sufficient degree.
Here are the advantages of using the lightweight walkers:
- Fall Prevention
Lightweight walkers can prevent many falls.
- Enhance Independence
Fear of falling has a negative effect on your day-to-day living. This may limit or interfere with your normal activities at home or at work. This fear of falling may also make you more dependent on others. The lightweight walkers will boost your confidence and make you less dependent on others.
- Conserve Energy
Users of lightweight walkers conserve their energy as less energy is spent during walking.
- Prevent the Deteriorative Use of Wheelchairs
Users of lightweight walkers move and walk more often. This increase in physical activity limits osteoporosis, lessens cardiopulmonary deconditioning and corrects peripheral circulation.
The standard lightweight walkers have a metal four-legged frame built out of lightweight materials such as magnesium and aluminum. The standard type has no wheels. The four legs of this equipment only have rubber tips.To move the standard lightweight walkers, these devices must be lifted and moved forward while walking.
While the standard lightweight walkers are easier to use than the cane, this type involves some degree of upper body strength. For safe use of the lightweight walkers, users must also have some degree of cognitive ability.
The lifting process of the standard lightweight walkers results to an unnatural walking pattern.