Aging, in itself, is a rather daunting prospect. The physical deterioration inherent to this biological process is enough to make every lover of freedom and adventure cringe. Â But the truth of the matter is, there is no escaping aging. It is a vital part of our existence, so, we might as well face it head on.
But, what if there is more than just the concept of aging to worry about? What if other concerns get thrown in the equation, for instance, the loss of one or more of your limbs? Should this scenario be enough to make you raise the white flag? If you answered no, then you will definitely go places with such optimism and tenacity. But, if an unequivocal yes is your response, then it is about time you reassess your way of thinking.
Our main thesis here is that aging with prosthetics is not entirely a hopeless circumstance. Despite the known discomforts involved in such condition, there is a way to age with prosthetic limbs while still living a normal life characterized by a sense of autonomy and normalcy.
It Takes Getting Used to
Usually, prosthesis limbs are given to individuals who have suffered from tragic accidents, or fallen prey to imperative limb extrication procedure due to health-related causes, such as diabetes-triggered gangrene. Â There are four major classifications of prosthetics and these include transtibial, transradial, transfemoral, and transhumeral. Also, these anatomical extensions come in various forms, from simple wood-prosthetics to elaborate aluminum contraptions that simulate basic human kinetics. Todayâ€™s most advanced prosthetic models are the C-leg prosthesis, robotic prosthesis, and myoelectric prosthesis. These breakthrough models are said to cater utmost convenience and comfort to users.
Regardless of the prostheticâ€™s design, mechanism, or level of modernity, aging persons still need the learning curve to adequately get the hang of their new anatomical property. This means that during the first few months, the prosthetics should be consistently used so as to facilitate fast adaption to the tool. As they say, practice makes perfect.
Care and Comfort
For aging persons who wish to maximize their new and modern extremities, there are specific tips and guidelines that must be followed.
- Detach the prosthesis during bedtime, and check for damage, lost parts, and loose pieces.
- Massage the stumpâ€™s skin with mild lotion, and, consistently clean the part.
- Swathe the stump in tight bandage when the prosthesis is not being used. This will prevent swelling.
- Consistently be on the look-out for possible wounds or sores on the stumpâ€™s skin.
- Consult with a physical therapist and strictly adhere to recommended exercises.
- Aging individuals who are using leg prosthesis must choose proper fitting footwear. It is also best to do away with high heels.
- Whenever using the prosthesis, make sure to put on a pair of clean and comfortable socks.
- Keep your weight constant for shift in body weight directly affects the prosthesisâ€™ fit.
All aging individuals need, and deserve, all the support they can get; even more so with aging individuals who happen to be reliant to prosthesis for mobility. A group of loving and loyal friends who unwaveringly provide support, in whatever manifestation, is truly indispensable.
Done in collaboration with Marc Webster, Parts and Components Specialist at All Time Medical Supplies & Mobility Aids. He also writes articles and columns focusing on health and wellness of the elderly, majority of which can be found online.