For those walking around with pain, discomfort, or balance problems, a cane or walker can be a great help to them. Using a cane or walker can help them avoid any falls or risk injuries from losing their balance. When it comes time to choose between a cane or a walker, it all depends on your preference and condition. There are a few things to consider when choosing between a cane or walker:
Consult a Healthcare Professional
Much of the time, the decision to use a cane or a walker will not be solely your choice. Before having to use a cane or a walker, a healthcare professional will be the one to suggest it or confirm if you need one. This healthcare professional will usually be a doctor, physician, physical therapist, or nurse. They will also inform you of which assistance will be best for you, whether it be a walker or cane.
The Difference Between a Cane and Walker
There are many different medical reasons and conditions for someone to use a cane or walker. If you are experiencing arthritis or pain in your knees and hips on one side, then a cane would be a good choice for you. It’s also important to understand that a cane will support up 25% of your weight. This indicates that it’s not best for those who struggle supporting most of their weight. It’s also important to realize that cane are not as stable as walkers.
Walkers are very stable and are able to support up to half of your weight while using them. A walker is mostly used for patients with arthritis or pain in your knees and hips on both sides. It is also good if you have medium to bad balance, gait problems, general weakness, or weakness of both legs. It’s important to remember that although walkers are more stable than canes, they are unable to be used on stairs.
Find the Right Fit
For a cane or walker to be used correctly, it’s important for them to have the right fit for you. In order to measure a cane or walker properly, be sure to wear normal shoes, hang your arm loosely at your side, and have someone measure the distance from your wrist to the floor. Once you have measured the distance from your wrist to the floor, have the walker or cane adjusted to this height. Most walkers and aluminium canes can be adjusted by pushing in buttons on each side and sliding the tubing into the correct length and locked in place.
To ensure your cane or walker is at the correct length, there should be a 20-degree to 30-degree bend in the elbow, meaning your upper arm is at 12 o’clock while your hand points to 5 o’clock. Once the walker or cane is at the correct length, this will ensure comfortable and painless walking.