From Muscle Car to Wheelchair: The Ride Nobody Wants
Nobody leaves their house in the morning assuming that they’ll experience a life-altering event by the end of the day. Sadly, statistics showing deaths from accidents prove that our assumptions are not always accurate. Luckily, not everyone involved in an auto accident meets such a tragic end, but many do end up so severely injured that they’re confined to a wheelchair or worse for the rest of their lives. Fortunately, this is not the end of an individual’s life, and those who take proactive measures can have a fulfilling, albeit different life.
Everyone who heads out on the roads faces dangers even if they’re the safest driver in the world, but those who have a love affair with their muscle cars understand that they could face additional dangers if they’re not careful with the power behind these cars. Regardless of whether an individual drives mostly for errands or just to show off their “metallic baby,” there are certain statistics they should know so they understand the dangers that they face.
While distracted driving is the most common cause of automobile-related deaths, speeding isn’t far behind. In fact, speeding is a contributing factor in one-third of all fatal auto accidents. This should be enough for individuals, regardless of how fast their muscle car is, to be careful on the streets. As mentioned, though, these accidents won’t always result in death.
Spinal cord injuries are the major reason for paraplegia or quadriplegia. Motor vehicle accidents make up 55% of all spinal cord injuries. Reasons for these accidents range from not using seat belts, being under the influence of alcohol or drugs, driver inexperience, and even fatigue.
Rebuilding a Life
Rebuilding one’s life after becoming wheelchair bound is an uphill battle, but following doctor’s orders and attending physical therapy, if prescribed, is absolutely essential. Additionally, there are all types of activities that those in wheelchairs can engage in. Many people join local groups that simply go out to dinner, movies, concerts and a plethora of other activities together. Those with an athletic side, can join wheelchair sports leagues.
Whatever reasons for a disability, it’s imperative to find a legal advocate who can help navigate the upcoming difficulties. An individual who was injured due to another person’s negligence, for instance, could receive substantial financial compensation if they speak with a personal injury attorney. These events are life changing, so it’s important for a person to seek out help whenever they can.
Following the aforementioned tips is vital in surviving mentally after being confined to a wheelchair, and this isn’t obvious anywhere more than in the difficult transition people face between a walking and a wheelchair-bound life. Many people’s initial difficulty is the stares they get in public. Some people simply don’t understand this level of existence, so they’ll often feel pity for those in wheelchairs. No one likes to be pitied, but sadly, this isn’t even the full extent of what people will face.
One of the most difficult things confronting those confined to wheelchairs is finding handicapped accessible areas. Luckily, federal law has made this much easier, but this doesn’t mean it’s necessarily easy. Many college students suddenly confined to wheelchairs, for instance, have complained about the difficulty they experience moving themselves up sometimes steep ramps carrying heavy books. Different people will face different hurdles, but for those who want to overcome their new handicap, being strong mentally can go a long way.
Counseling may help with the emotional turmoil. Initial thoughts of anger of having a world turned upside down may turn to depression. Seek psychological help while getting physical rehabilitation. In order to be successful, these therapies should go hand in hand.
There’s no denying that coming back from a dangerous auto accident will be difficult, but it is by no means an impossibility. Life will definitely change; there’s no getting around that. For those who press forward, however, the things they can accomplish in their life may surprise even them. Franklin D. Roosevelt, arguably one of the greatest politicians of all time, was confined to a wheelchair, attested to the fact that life in a wheelchair doesn’t have to be tragic.
Product designer Debbie Nguyen researched disabilities by spending time in a wheelchair. She also visited many rehab centers and interviewed patients for what they needed to make their day to day lives easier to maneuver. Please watch video to see the way accidents can affect lives and how to shelter from the tragedies.
Photo Credit: http://flic.kr/p/4qfqkD