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When a motor vehicle hits a bicyclist or pedestrian, the results can be devastating. It can take years of recovery to return to even a semblance of your former self. You may be stuck using a wheelchair for a long time, so it’s important to know how you can protect yourself from further problems.

5 tips every wheelchair user should know:

  1. Maintain good hygiene: The challenge of taking a shower can be considerable when you’re in a wheelchair — but you need to maintain good hygiene to prevent numerous health problems, including potential infections.
  2. Keep moving: If you have a loss of sensation in your lower body, you may be prone to pressure ulcers. The only way to prevent them is to reposition yourself at least every couple hours.
  3. Exercise regularly: It isn’t easy to get your cardiovascular exercise in when you’re confined to a chair, but it’s essential for both your mental and physical health. Talk to your doctors about swimming, wheelchair sprinting or other types of physical therapy.
  4. Maintain the proper posture: Don’t slouch when you sit. That can lead to scoliosis, breathing problems and other issues. Make sure that you sit up properly and keep your feet, knees and hips aligned.
  5. Get therapy: This is a huge adjustment. You have to work through your anger and grief and find ways to manage any depression. If you’re struggling, ask your doctor for a referral.

When you’re in a wheelchair, you need plenty of assistance to get around and manage your day. Money from a lawsuit may not restore your good health, but it can provide for your comfort. For example, it can pay for things like a wheelchair-accessible van, a bed that’s adjustable so that you can move yourself in and out more easily and modifications to your home. Speak to an attorney about what it takes to get all the compensation you are due.