Wheelchair Etiquette for a Better World

wheelchair etiquette

If you’re accustomed to working with people who use wheelchairs, you probably have a good understanding of wheelchair etiquette. However, if you’re new to caring for, working with or living near a person in a wheelchair, you might not be sure how to act around them. EZ-ACCESS has experience working with a variety of disabled customers and their caregivers, and it can be frustrating for them when the people they interact with don’t have the best etiquette. Check out our list of wheelchair etiquette that can help make you a better person and caregiver and make your town more accessible to everyone who lives there. You might just find some ideas you’ve never considered before.

  • Don’t automatically hold on to or lean on someone’s wheelchair. If you’re good friends, it’s fine, but otherwise it can be distracting and uncomfortable.
  • Offer assistance, but don’t insist. They’ll say yes if they need help.
  • Always talk to the person in the wheelchair instead of a caregiver unless they are unable to talk.
  • If you can, sit down to share the same eye level when you’re talking.
  • Practice referring to people in a wheelchair as just that – “in a wheelchair”.
  • Don’t pity people in wheelchairs; talk to them about the cool things that come along with using a wheelchair.
  • Encourage your community to put curb cuts on all sidewalks. They’re inexpensive and help wheelchair users to be independent.
  • Write to your city to encourage the implementation of ramps at various city buildings and parks. Better yet, encourage the city council committees responsible for transportation, building and zoning to include members in wheelchairs or at least consult with people who use wheelchairs in your community. That way, all projects will be accessible to everyone.
  • Just be yourself. People in wheelchairs don’t expect special treatment, just fair treatment. Don’t be nervous about interacting with someone in a wheelchair.

We hope these tips help you feel more prepared to work with or help someone in a wheelchair in your community. Once you start thinking about the accessibility of people with varying levels of mobility, you start to see where you and your town could use improvement. If you’re looking for products to make your home or business more accessible, see what we have to offer here!

Not Your Average Ramp: What Makes the Pathway Modular Access System the Best

pathway modular access system

When you need improved accessibility to your home, you want it ASAP. You want the very best in safety and stability, but you might not be sure what to look for. You also want a reasonable price tag. Why not just have a family member or friend construct a wooden ramp for you? Why not go with a cheap option? While those ideas may seem convenient at the time, they won’t benefit you in the long run. EZ-ACCESS knows ramps. It’s what we spend all of our time engineering, constructing and installing. We know what our customers need and want in a ramp. And that’s why our Pathway Modular Access System is simply the best ramp option for your money. Let us show you why it’s not your average ramp:

You won’t have to settle for a bumpy ride off the ramp

In order to help you transition from the ramp to the ground with extra stability, we offer a standard ground transition, lower transition, landing pad, and transition plate connection with the Pathway Modular Access System. Depending on your needs and the setup of the ramp, we’ll find the best transition option for you.

Get customized handrails so you feel safe

The Pathway Modular Access System offers loops for handrail options. You can easily attach handrails together with our handrail connectors that require no additional fasteners or hardware. We want you to have the rails that are easiest for you to navigate and make you feel safe and secure on your ramp.

Don’t worry about fitting a ramp on your unique entryway

The Pathway Modular Access System has an angled platform that allows it to fit tight configurations. The ramp can fit multi-dimensional angles and takes up less space than most ramps. The low-profile, offset, oversized feet create extra stability and allow for multi-positional placement. You can also have stairs added for an additional entry option to your ramp and home.

Cut out maintenance with aluminum

Unlike wood ramps, aluminum requires little to no maintenance, won’t rust or rot, assembles with ease and minimal tools, doesn’t require a building permit, and can easily be expanded, reconfigured or moved to another location.

When you’re considering a ramp for your home, choose the option that offers you the most safety, customization and convenience.

Adjusting to School in a Wheelchair

school in a wheelchair

The kids have been in school for a few weeks now, and as they bring new books, backpacks and sports gear to school, some kids may be starting school with a different addition: a wheelchair. If your child isn’t used to navigating their school in their wheelchair, their day can be frustrating. EZ-ACCESS understands that transitioning to a new area in a wheelchair can be difficult. If your child is starting school in a new wheelchair, check out these tips for making the transition easier.

Weigh transportation options

Is it more effective to drive your child to school or rely on school/public transportation? If you need assistance getting your child into a vehicle, consider our portable ramp options. If your student takes the bus, schools will often be willing to send an aid to help them gather their things at the end of the day and get them on the bus safely.

Talk to your kids about how they should respond to questions

Your child is bound to be asked questions by other kids about why they’re in a wheelchair. Explain to them that other children are just curious and they should simply respond honestly to their questions. Assure them that there’s nothing to get defensive about and they should look at their wheelchair as a way to start conversations and meet new friends.

Encourage extracurricular activities

Some children in wheelchairs feel that they simply won’t be able to participate in certain school activities. Encourage your kids to ask about anything they’re interested in and see if they can take part in an adapted way. This is a great way for them to make friends and learn skills outside of the classroom.

Prepare for accessibility difficulties

Your school may be accessible when it comes to ramps and elevators, but what about other issues your student might face? It can be hard to reach books in lockers, reach food and utensils in the lunch line, carry a backpack, fit under desks and tables, get to class on time, or find time to visit the restroom between classes. Once your child has identified some issues they face at school, talk to the administration about how to remedy those issues if possible. Talk to your child’s teachers so they’re aware of these issues or tell your child to discuss these things with their teachers.

Equip them with the right accessories

To avoid balancing objects on their laps, set your child up with wheelchair bags and packs to hold their things. See if the school will allow your child to have a set of books at school and at home so they don’t have to travel with them. This is also a great time to help your child decorate their wheelchair so it expresses any new look they’re going for this school year.

The new school year can be a breeze if you simply talk to your child about any issues they’re facing and work with the school to fix them. If your child feels welcomed by their school and knows they can openly communicate issues, they’ll be more successful. Check in with your child to make sure their school year is off to a great start.

 

BREAKING NEWS: EZ-ACCESS LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE FOR CUSTOMERS & VENDORS

EZ-ACCESS website

The wait is over! EZ-ACCESS today revealed a new website they have been quietly working on for the past few months with HME web marketing provider, VGM Forbin. The new EZ-ACCESS website, www.ezaccess.com, provides visitors with resources and tools that will make it much easier for customers to learn about all products and connect with EZ-ACCESS’ network of dealers across the United States.

What’s so great about the new EZ-ACCESS website? EVERYTHING!

It’s all about the tools – The new EZ-ACCESS website features 4 innovative new tools that will help customers determine which ramp is right for them, what incline they will need, where they can find a dealer close by and how they can buy online if there is not a dealer in their neighborhood. These tools are the Ramp Selector, the Incline Calculator, the Dealer Locator and the Buy Online tool.

Product info at your fingertips – The new EZ-ACCESS website offers detailed information and resources for every EZ-ACCESS product including product photos featuring photo zoom, product specifications, features, options, documents such as the product manuals and instructions, videos and customer reviews.

Larger than life imagery – The new EZ-ACCESS website uses large lifestyle images to display products in the actual settings they would be used in, and with real users. These amazing images were captured in the Midwest by Tim Dodd Photography!

Navigation made easy – The new EZ-ACCESS website uses several methods to get users to the products they are looking for. Users can search for products by industry and product type or they can search by product name if they know exactly which product they want.

And SO MUCH SUPPORT – A few other features of the new EZ-ACCESS website include a robust support section which offers ramp financing resources and FAQs, and a large company section for job postings, media contacts, events, apparel and partnerships.

EZ-ACCESS.com Phase II – There are a few large enhancements we have planned for the future, but we won’t tell you about those yet. You’ll just have to wait and see!

All in all, the new EZ-ACCESS website is pretty amazing, but don’t take our word for it. See for yourself at www.ezaccess.com, and be sure to let us know how we can customize the site to your needs!

Safety for Your Heavy-Lifting Workers: Why Your Company Needs Commercial Ramps and Stair Systems

Heavy lifting at work

Ramps and stair systems not only make your workers more efficient, they keep them safe! Learn how!

If you work for or own a moving business or any business in which heavy materials are lifted by workers, you are probably aware of the dangers and risks associated with heavy lifting, pushing and pulling. EZ-ACCESS understands the importance of worker safety. That’s why we have the most durable and functional commercial ramps and stair systems to fit the needs of your business and keep your workers safe and efficient. Our commercial fleet systems can make your business a better place to work. Learn more about the options we offer below and the issues they solve for heavy-lifting workers.

Pulling vs. Pushing: The Traverse Multi-Purpose Ramp

According to OSHA, pushing heavy objects is much healthier and safer for the body than pulling them. Pushing uses large muscle groups and allows workers to apply more force to the load, therefore reducing strain and the risk for injury.

With the Aluminum Traverse Loading Ramp, workers can easily push materials down and up the ramp, which can be used on delivery trucks, loading docks, construction sites, trailers or storage units. This ramp is available in 4, 6, 8, and 10 foot lengths with a weight capacity of 1,200 pounds. The 12 foot and 14 foot length models have a weight capacity of 850 pounds. The Traverse ramp is light enough to carry and strong enough to do the job.

Lifting with the Legs at 90 Degrees: The Fortress OSHA Stair System

While a different approach may be needed for each new lift depending on the size, weight and shape of the object being lifted, it is generally safe to lift by bending the knees to 90 degrees, picking up the object, holding it in the “Power Zone” (between mid-chest and mid-thigh), and lifting with the legs instead of straining the back. It is dangerous if workers have to step up to a platform by extending their legs farther than 90 degrees and lift.

The Fortress OSHA Stair System eliminates that problem. It provides temporary or permanent stair access to mobile modular buildings, portable classrooms, temporary job sites, cargo trailers and more. The stair system can be adjusted to fit any lot configuration or layout. It’s compliant with recommended OSHA lifting guidelines.

Keep your workers safe by providing them with a commercial ramp or stair system from EZ-ACCESS. Our commercial systems provide a safe, convenient, functional work environment for your heavy-lifting workers.

Put a Stop to Back-To-School Germs

Children's health

The kids are exposed to tons of germs when they head back to school. Keep your household healthy with these ideas!

It’s back-to-school time, and that means the kids will soon be coming home with germs, coughs and sneezes. EZ-ACCESS wants you to stay healthy this back-to-school season. Avoid common back-to-school bugs with these tips for keeping the kids and you in tip-top shape.

Always keep bedtime

Kids get accustomed to staying up later in the summertime, and they’ll need some time to get back to their old school-night bedtime routine. Start enforcing bedtime a week before school starts so they’re used to it and the complaints have gone away by the time school actually starts. More sleep equals a better immune system.

Stock up on vitamin C

This powerful vitamin increases your immune system’s power, so it’ll help the kids fight of those school germs. Start buying more fruits like kiwi, strawberries, oranges and cherries to get the family more vitamin C.

Advocate for exercise

Get the kids out of their summer routine of watching TV and playing video games by taking them to parks and encouraging outdoor play or practice for upcoming sports. Extra exercise can help keep the kids from getting sick once they’re exposed to germs. If your child has a disability or is in a wheelchair, there are adaptive sports options for them in the area.

Incorporate zinc into your diets

Zinc promotes the production of white blood cells, which fight disease and infections. To add more to your diet, start cooking more beans and purchase zinc-fortified cereals.

Drink more water

Send your child off to school with a reusable water bottle to help keep them hydrated during the day. Our wheelchair accessories make it easy for children in wheelchairs to carry water bottles and healthy snacks with them throughout the day. These carriers and packs can also hold their textbooks and supplies.

Keep up proper hygiene

Remind the kids of good hygiene practices, like washing hands frequently and after bathroom use and before meals. Tell them to cover their coughs and sneezes with their elbows. Disinfect their cell phones before the year starts and send them off with mini hand sanitizer bottles for their backpacks. If your child is in a wheelchair and needs help in the restroom, make sure their school has personnel that can assist them to ensure they’re clean and happy during the school day.

Back-to-school is also a good time to look into the accessibility of your school. If your child is in a wheelchair, it’s important that their classes have desks they can fit under and lockers that are accessible from a seated position. These simple adjustments will help them feel welcomed and happy at school.

Make back-to-school a pleasant time for the whole family, free from colds, coughs and germs. Protect your kids and keep everyone happy and healthy with these germ-busting tips.

Make Bad Sleep Nothing but a Dream: Get Better Sleep With These Tips

Combat sleep issues

Getting good sleep could be even more important than you think! Don’t risk your future health – take these tips to get better sleep tonight!

Do you have trouble falling asleep at night or staying asleep throughout the night? Do you toss and turn and never feel rested in the morning? These are very common issues for adults and aging adults. Getting enough sleep often isn’t a priority for busy adults, but getting enough sleep at night (about 7 hours, uninterrupted) is extremely important for your overall health and especially your brain health and function. A new study published in SLEEP and conducted by the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore found that reduced sleep in seniors is associated with faster brain ventricle enlargement and a decline in cognitive function and performance. The enlargement of brain ventricles is also known as a marker for dementia and diseases like Alzheimer’s. EZ-ACCESS wants you to be aware of health issues that could affect you. We want you to get the best sleep possible to live a healthier life. Keep reading to learn ways to get more and better sleep at night.

Focus on sleep hygiene

Use the bedroom for only sleep, keep consistent sleep and wake times, avoid caffeine in the afternoon, keep pets out of the bedroom, make sure the bedroom is cool, dark and quiet and keep TVs and computers out the bedroom.

Form a pre-bed ritual

Try to practice the same routine before bed to “prepare” you for sleep. Try taking a hot bath or drinking warm chamomile tea before bed.

Consider a reclining wheelchair or tilt-in-space wheelchair

If transitioning from your wheelchair to your bed is difficult or uncomfortable, you may consider a wheelchair that allows you to rest or sleep in it comfortably. Reclining wheelchairs have a high back that reclines independent from the rest of the chair, and tilt-in-space chairs have adjustable backs, seats and leg rests to form more of a recliner position. Tilt-in-space wheelchairs are perfect for people with specific medical issues, like difficulty sitting upright for long periods, curvature of the spine, pain or pressure from sitting upright in a wheelchair, seizures, sleep disorders and fluctuating muscle control. Another plus: If you are more comfortable in your wheelchair throughout the day, it will be easier to get better sleep at night, free from aches and pains. Check out our wheelchair accessories to help you be more comfortable in your chair.

Don’t work right before bed

Your body needs a break from the stress of work to unwind before sleep. If you can’t stop thinking about worries and responsibilities, write them down on a piece of paper and let them go. There’s nothing you can do about them until tomorrow anyway, so you might as well get well-rested to better tackle the day ahead.

Exercise

Don’t work out right before bed, but try an evening or morning workout to help you get the slowest waves of sleep.

With proper sleep, you’ll maintain better overall health and brain health. Make sleep a priority in your life, and try these tips to make the most of your night’s rest!

Benefits of Using a Portable Ramp from EZ-ACCESS

Ramp accessibility

Portable ramps can make mobility much easier for you!

If you are a wheelchair or scooter user, you probably have some sort of ramp system that allows you to enter and exit your home. But what about when you go to other locations, like family and friends’ homes and other places that are not wheelchair accessible? And what about getting in and out of cars and other transportation? It can be incredibly frustrating if there are not ramps available to you. Without assistance from someone, you may not be able to get over certain thresholds or up stair entrances. Eliminate that issue with a portable ramp from EZ-ACCESS. We understand the importance of ease of mobility. We have a wide selection of lightweight, easy-to-transport ramps so you can get where you need and want to go at any time. Learn about the options we have for you below and their benefits.

SUITCASE Singlefold Ramp

This ramp is lightweight, ultra-strong, and folds once for carrying. Features an extruded slip-resistant tread and a bottom transition plate for an easy ride from ramp to ground. The surface is 30 inches wide and has an 800 pound weight capacity. The SUITCASE Singlefold Ramp is available in 2-8 foot lengths.

SUITCASE Trifold AS Ramp

This ramp has a unique three-fold design and can be carried in two parts or as one unit. This ramp has an applied surface (AS) that is slip-resistant, a 29-inch surface and 800 pound weight capacity.

SUITCASE Singlefold AS Ramp

This ramp is similar to the SUITCASE Singlefold Ramp but has a 29-inch surface, applied slip-resistant tread and is available in 2-6 foot lengths.

Top Lip Extension

Consider getting this addition for your ramp. It extends the top lip to nine inches, helping you to get over larger bumpers.

When choosing a portable ramp, it’s important to consider the amount of weight it can bear, the type and durability of the materials used, and the type of wheelchair or scooter you’ll be using so you can choose the best ramp to match it. Our ramps are made of aluminum, making them lightweight and extremely durable and resistant to the elements.

EZ-ACCESS wants you to have comfortable mobility wherever life takes you.  If you would like to learn more about our portable ramps and find out which is best for your wheelchair or scooter model and personal needs, contact us today!

Modular Ramps: Why Aluminum Ramps are Best

aluminum ramps

If you’re considering adding a modular ramp to your home to make it more accessible, you have few important choices to make. One choice that many people face is whether to install a wooden ramp or an aluminum ramp. There are many reasons to choose an aluminum ramp over a wooden one.

Aluminum ramps are durable in all weather, can easily be reconfigured, are quick to install and typically no building permits are required, making your home modification much quicker. Aluminum ramps are also virtually maintenance-free, will not rust or rot, require minimal tools for assembly, can easily be moved or expanded, reused, resold or rented. Our 24 foot Pathway Modular Ramp Access System with handrails can be set up in less than 30 minutes and aluminum leaves no impact on the environment.

Wood ramps, on the other hand, can create a lot of problems. Wood ramps need regular maintenance, can decay and require a contractor or carpenter to be built along with a permit. Wood ramps can only be changed through demolition and reconstruction; they don’t add value to your home and can in fact bring down the value. They take about two days to install and the wood could contain dangerous chemicals or treatments.

EZ-ACCESS’s Pathway Modular Access System is made from aluminum and has other great features as well. This ramp can be configured to fit any entryway and can be moved and reconfigured for other parts of the house or a new house. The ramp also has a slip-resistant surface that keeps traction in any weather. You can also choose to add the features of a modular landing pad, modular gate and handrail loops.

EZ-ACCESS wants you to have the safest and most durable ramp solution for your home. We believe aluminum ramps are best and have the most benefits. The Pathway Modular Access System has been a success with customers and provides everything people with mobility issues need along with customization.

Which commercial ramp or stair system is right for you?

commercial ramp

If your business is considering using ramps for easier loading and unloading, or to make your building accessible, you have several options to choose from. EZ-ACCESS offers two different kinds of commercial ramps and a stair system to meet your business’s needs. EZ-ACCESS wants you to understand the features of each so you can choose which option will be most beneficial for you.

Traverse Loading Ramp

This ramp is light enough to carry, but 4 foot-10 foot ramps can hold up to 1,200 pounds and 12 foot and 14 foot ramps can hold up to 800 pounds. This ramp can help make loading and unloading from your delivery truck, trailer, storage unit or loading dock much easier. The Traverse ramp is slip-resistant and makes moving heavy objects much safer for your employees and can help them be more efficient. It is available is several sizes – 4 feet, 6 feet, 8 feet, 10 feet, 12 feet and 14 feet. There’s no assembly required for this ramp.

The Traverse is a great solution for construction and moving truck businesses.

Titan Commercial Ramp and Stair System

This ramp system will make your business ADA and IBC compliant and can fit any entryway or lot configuration. It’s easy to move and reconfigure for other parts of your building too. The Titan System has slip-resistant tread and is very low-maintenance. With the Titan, you get a three-year warranty too.

Fortress OSHA Stair System

Do you have a mobile building on your campus, a portable classroom, a cargo trailer or temporary job site with a raised entryway that needs stairs? Then the Fortress OSHA Stair System is perfect for you. This isn’t a handicap accessible system, but it provides stair access to raised buildings and comes in a variety of heights to fit any entryway – 3 Tread, height ranges from 23 inches to 34 inches, 4 Tread, height ranges from 27.5 inches to 42.5 inches. The legs have captured fasteners and infinite adjustability. The system has a permanent slip-resistant walking surface. Handrails can fold flat for easy transportation.

It’s important for your employees and customers to be able to easily access your business. The commercial options from EZ-ACCESS make for easy installation and reliable accessibility for any entryway.