There are many reasons why getting out of the car can be difficult, but the most obvious is a lack of muscle strength in the legs which makes standing up both difficult and potentially dangerous. In the home there’s plenty of equipment for disabled people that makes standing up from a sitting position easy – but in the car there are few such equivalents.
When it comes to people who cannot use their legs/hips or both to get out of the car, there are several different pieces of handicap car equipment which come to mind. The first is a 360 degree rotating seat which allows you to gently raise your legs just slightly off the floor before rotating yourself using your hands. It takes almost no effort because the rotating seat does almost all the work, and you substantially reduce the amount of effort required because instead of lifting both your legs out of the door, you can just use the force from the seat itself to raise them out of the vehicle once they’ve reached the inside of the door after you’ve spun around.
Car caddies are another great tool for getting up out of the car, and they can be attachable in several places but are generally found on the car door. These allow you to grip firmly onto a sturdy, non-slip handle so that you can safely use the strength in your upper body to compensate for the lack of strength in your lower body. There are lots of different types you can buy but the great thing about this is they’re usually very cheap only costing around $15-25 maximum.
One thing that’s important when you’re getting out of the car is to make sure you have someone there to grab you in case you fall. It’s not just about having them there to protect you which is important, but just knowing that there is someone there to step in and help you if you so require is a real confidence booster – and I know from personal experience that where there was no one there to help me get out of the car with my fractured hip it becomes a much scarier situation.
One problem that can occur with regards to making exiting the vehicle more difficult is that driving hand controls can easily get in the way of people’s legs. Most handicap hand controls are quite large and take up a decent portion of the leg space and when it comes to getting out of the car issues readily arise. If this is a serious problem then you might want to consider investing in a brand which is less intrusive. There are much less irritating manufacturers out there but as you can imagine the ease of access comes with an increased price tag, a set of menox hand controls for example can easily set you back 2000 dollars as opposed to monarch hand controls which are around 400 dollars but which are far bulkier.
A possibile solution is to use mobile hand controls which you can add or remove to allow disabled driver or driving by able-bodied persons.
Whatever your situation you need to make sure you have the right support with regards to equipment, your vehicle and helpers on hand. If you’re getting out of your car and you’re worried about falling over then you definitely need to act. You should not be thinking ‘will I fall over this time?’, you should be completely confident in the people and equipment around you so that when you exit the vehicle there is no feeling of doubt; only security.