Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Independent Living and Disability

With the right facilities and support, living an independent life with a physical disability is now possible. However, here are a few things you need to know before you take the big plunge:

1. Things you will need in your house

If you plan to live an independent life, having a suitable home is one of the most important steps. Is the house you intend to live in adequate for your needs, or does it require adjustments? Your city’s social services department will conduct a social and health care assessment to ascertain your specific needs which may include an analysis of the various kinds of equipment you may need.

2. How to adapt to living in a house alone

It will take some time to get used to living alone in a house. Social care services can offer sufficient amount of financial support to make sure you have more freedom of movement inside your house.

The facilities they may pay for include:

  • Installing ramps and widening doors
  • Improving access to facilities and rooms – for instance, by providing a bathroom downstairs or installing a stair lift
  • Offering a heating system that is able to suit your needs
  • Adapting lighting or heating controls to make them simpler to use
  • Improving movement around the house

3. Financial help you can get to live independently

As pointed out earlier, there are several governmental agencies that work to offer subsidies and financial help depending on your needs. This financial assistance is aimed at helping you pay for your equipment, rent, house enhancements or essential adaptations.

You can get the money from social services directly through the direct payment scheme, giving you more control over the care you get.

4. How to travel with a disability?

One of the toughest parts of living alone with a disability is travelling. It is almost impossible for people with disability to sit inside cabs or drive their own vehicles. Fortunately, there are several non-medical transportation companies that offer well equipped vans. All you have to do is call their number and designate a time and a place. They will be at your doorstep to pick you up. Whether you need to travel to your doctor’s appointment or wish to take a day out for leisure, these vans can offer you the comfort you need.

If living alone seems like a overwhelming task, you can also consider care homes that offer some level of support that you can’t have in your own house. Living in such accommodations doesn't necessarily mean that you are no longer free. You can always choose the level of independence you wish to have. Once, you feel you are confident enough to live alone, you can gradually move into an independent house.