I’ve heard some pretty crazy things come out of people’s mouths in my few short years as a wheelchair user. Most people definitely mean well, but some sentiments aren’t received the way many able bodied people might expect. In the disabled community, it’s not uncommon for us to joke with each other about some of our interesting conversations with family, friends and strangers that often involve some off putting statements. below are the top 10 things that I’ve heard people say since my injury that don’t necessarily leave me with a warm and fuzzy feeling. –Rachelle Friedman Continue Reading »
Articles Tagged: People with Disabilities
If you’re a person who uses a wheelchair, it can be a challenge trying to decide what costume to wear for an upcoming Halloween party. But, if you spend some time online, you’ll find plenty of Halloween costumes that you can make yourself without spending a lot of money. Whether the costume is for an adult or a child in a wheelchair, there are a lot of creative suggestions to be considered. Here are some ideas for costumes that involve a wheelchair. In addition, here are several websites with costume suggestions including the materials needed and the steps to follow to successfully create a look that will make you the talk of the party. Continue Reading »
Technology is one of the most powerful tools that can be provided to people with spinal cord injuries (SCI). It is widely accepted among user and clinical communities that wheelchairs can be tremendously empowering when properly selected, fitted, and the users are adequately trained. Unfortunately, wheelchair users are being negatively impacted by misguided changes in reimbursement for wheelchairs and associated technology resulting in them obtaining lower quality products. To make matters worse, newly injured people rarely receive sufficient training in wheelchair skills and maintenance, leading to premature wheelchair failure, injuries and down-time for users, and higher barriers to community participation. Conversely, new technologies show promise to increase the capabilities of people with SCI, but will trends change and make these technologies available and reimbursable? Science must push ahead and show the possibilities, while advocacy must drive policy to catch up. Continue Reading »
United Spinal Presents Free Webinars on Healthy Living for People with Disabilities & their Caregivers
NEW YORK, Aug. 29, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — United Spinal Association’s membership division, National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NSCIA), will host two free webinars this September for people living with disabilities and their caregivers that will focus on ways to discover a healthy & active lifestyle and how to overcome the challenges of chronic health issues such as spinal cord injury (SCI), MS, polio, ALS or spina bifida.
“For people living with disabilities and their caregivers, the challenges of maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle can be overwhelming at times. But with the right strategy and outlook, it’s within everyone’s reach. These webinars will build a foundation for many to discover better health, as well as happiness and success,” said Marlene Perkins, VP of Corporate and Community Relations at United Spinal. Continue Reading »
Ancient Egyptians knew it, Greek philosopher and writer Hippocrates was talking about it over 2,400 years ago and physicians of the Roman Empire recommended it. The amazing effect of water therapy, or aquatic therapy, is working to improve the lives of children with a wide range of disabilities. The only side effect appears to be smiles. Continue Reading »
During one especially cold morning in January of last year, a disabled man who uses a wheelchair and ventilator , and his wife were heading for their office in the 100 block of South 11th Street in downtown St. Louis. They were accosted that morning by a woman, standing outside the building, smoking a cigarette.
She wanted to know why in the world a man in a wheelchair would be out in this weather. She wasn’t placated by the obvious response from the man’s companion that he, like many other St.Louisans, was simply on his way to work. It apparently didn’t occur to the woman that some severely disabled people work every day. Continue Reading »
Severity of spinal cord injury in adults is not related to how they rate their health, Wayne State University researchers have found.
In a study of self-rated health (SRH) published this month in the Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine, Cathy Lysack, Ph.D., deputy director of WSU’s Institute of Gerontology, along with former Wayne State researcher Katerina Machacova, Ph.D., and Stewart Neufeld, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Institute of Gerontology, evaluated people with spinal cord injuries (SCI) in an effort to better understand the relationship between their self-rated physical ability to perform necessary daily activities and their SRH — the way people perceive their own health. Continue Reading »
While few caregivers would think twice about assisting a person with disabilities in the bathroom, many feel squeamish about advising or assisting that same person in the bedroom.
The sexuality of people with disabilities, many of whom require varying degrees of assistance to lead fulfilling sex lives, continues to be overlooked, avoided or even dismissed as a component of holistic care because of a longstanding stigma that shrouds disability and sex. A dearth of resources, training and infrastructure to guide caregivers and patients in addressing sexual needs contributes to the problem. Continue Reading »
Cast for broken bone gets paralyzed woman different treatment
I remember seeing a movie years ago about a girl who is paralyzed but pretends to have a broken leg while on a skiing vacation so she can enjoy a respite from how she ordinarily is treated by society.
The movie’s underlying premise was that people treated her differently when they thought her wheelchair was a temporary fixture in her life instead of a permanent one. It wasn’t a particularly good movie (as evidenced by the fact that both the title and lead actress’ name escape me) but I recently was reminded of it when I saw a friend of mine, Shauna Petrie, a paraplegic since she was 16. Continue Reading »
“Life is not measured by the number breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.” This quote has two meanings for me. The first meaning is exactly how it’s stated. The second is a literal and personal meaning. Life is not measured by the number breaths I take, which happens to be 18 breaths a minute, but by the moment that took my breath away. On November 1, 2002 I was in a car accident. I broke my neck at C1 C2 and injured my spinal cord. Continue Reading »