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Spinal Cord Injury: Adapting Your Home - Topic Overview

When you leave a rehabilitation (rehab) center for your home after a spinal cord injury (SCI), you need to have your home ready for your special needs. Following are some of the adaptations and adaptive equipment you may need. Talk with your rehab team about what you will need specifically and the best way to proceed.

  • Wheelchair fit. If you are in a wheelchair most of the time, height and width are a concern. You may need to build a ramp into your home for easy entry in your wheelchair. Discuss with your rehab team how best to deal with hall and door width, countertops, water faucets, sinks, towel racks, light switches, and heating and cooling controls.
  • Eating and cooking. You may need special handles so you can hold spoons, forks, knives, plates, cups, and other utensils. You may need long straws to help you drink. If you cook, you may need a shorter stove, or you can install a mirror over the stove so you can see the food while it is cooking.
  • Dressing and grooming. You may need tools to help you reach your feet, pull on socks, zip up zippers, and open and close buttons. You may also need Velcro fasteners for clothing or shoes, loops in your clothing to help you dress and undress, sponges or bath mitts, and special handles for toothbrushes, combs, razors, and hairbrushes. You may also need special mirrors.
  • Other adaptive equipment includes tools that help you pick up faraway things (reachers) and small objects (if you have little pinch strength). You may also need holders for telephones, pens, and pencils, and devices to turn on and adjust electric appliances such as radios, TVs, and computers.

For more information on adapting your lifestyle and home, contact any of the groups or Internet sites listed in the Other Places to Get Help section of the topic Living With a Spinal Cord Injury.

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The Continuum of Rehabilitation for Persons with Traumatic Brain Injury

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when an impact to the head results in disruption of brain functioning. While post-TBI physical impairments can hinder functional independence, the behavioral, cognitive, emotional, psychosocial, and personality changes associated with TBI frequently lead to even greater problems. Comprehensive evaluation and treatment are the foundation to optimizing outcome after TBI, as the complex functions affected,...

Read the The Continuum of Rehabilitation for Persons with Traumatic Brain Injury article > >

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: March 12, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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