Standing Frames – The Benefits
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The benefits of using a standing frame as a paraplegic is a very important and one that can improve lives in a number of ways.
Improved Bone Density and Reduced Risk of Fractures
Using a standing frame can help to improve bone density and reduce the risk of fractures but to do this, it is important to get the right load on the bones and get the muscles working.
Muscle Chains Lengthen and Retractions are Prevented
Due to the lack of movement and the inability to stand independently, there is a risk of muscle shortening contracture which flexes the hip or both the hip and knee. It can help to improve articulation and reduce spasticity.
Enhanced Respirator Function
Breathing in involves the muscles working to separate the chest cavity from the abdomen which is also known as the diaphragm. The muscle shortens to inhale air and when the air is exhaled, the muscle lengthens. When standing, the diaphragm is afforded more space and so it can shorten and lengthen more which improves breathing.
Cardio- circulatory Function Improved
Being in an upright position helps the body to supply oxygen to the blood while also helping the body to pump oxygenated blood around the body more efficiently. It can also help to improve blood pressure, heartrate and reduce swelling of the lower limbs.
Improvement to bowel function, digestion and bladder
Gravity itself aids digestion and the muscles of the stomach while being upright helps the bowel to function more efficiently while bladder pressure is also reduced significantly.
The Formation of the Hip Joint
Using a standing frame can help to prevent dislocation and subluxation of the hip and so, the integrity of the hip is maintained.
Reduction in Skin Damage
Sitting for long periods of time can cause pressures while the ischial tuberosities can be put under unusual pressures which can result in damaged skin. When in an upright position, the blood that has more oxygen, can reach the tissue to help repair and strengthen the skin.
Improved attention, sleep-wake rhythm and well-being
There are many psychological benefits that come with standing. Individuals feel more alert and have a better quality of sleep, which means reduced fatigue and improved well-being. Alongside this, there is optimisation of the sensory motor, comfort as well as attention.
It Can help aid Daily Activities
There are many physiological benefits that come with using a frame and they all work together. Many of these benefits can help to improve stimulation and the way in which daily activities are carried out. There are things such as personal hygiene that are improved through standing and the way in which the upper limbs are positions also means that hand and eye co-ordination are improved which can only help to benefit daily activities.
A standing frame has a wide range of benefits. Incorporating one into daily life can enhance the well-being of an individual and ensure that they help the body to deal with the stresses on the body that come from sitting in a wheelchair.
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