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Freezing at home in a wheelchair

How to protect yourself at home from the cold as a wheelchair user

When it gets cold outside, it is often also cool inside the apartment. The heaters are not yet properly adjusted. But the cold is already creeping into your home. It moves through the bones and you are already wondering: How should I warm myself up again? In addition, your circulation does not really get going because you can only move a little. In short: you freeze quickly - even in the apartment.

It's cold at home: Maybe you know that?

  • The heating is not yet properly set when the cold season starts.
  • Through the windows there is a slight chill coming in.
  • The heating switches off at night. Thus the apartment is cold in the morning.
  • You lie in a warm bed and have to change to the cold wheelchair.
  • The metal bars of the footrests are very cold and you bump against them with your legs.
  • You try to avoid airing the apartment. This way the cold from outside will not come in.
  • They feel every draught as unpleasant because they cool down easily.
  • They get cold feet quickly, because the cold air moves from the floor upwards.
  • Your partner has a different temperature perception. They argue about which level the heating should be set to.

That is why it is never as warm in the apartment as you actually need it. We would like to give you a few tips on how you can keep yourself warm at home.

Tips: How to protect yourself from the cold at home

Your apartment is cool in the morning? You do not want to get out of a warm bed? Airing the apartment is out of the question for you, no matter how healthy it is. Many people in wheelchairs freeze quickly. Or find it difficult to get warm again. The thoughts of staying in a warm bed or not airing the room are all too understandable. But staying in bed also means little movement. However, movement is important for your health. The same applies to airing your home. By exercising and airing your home for 15 minutes a day, you can prevent many ailments. In order not to freeze, we have summarised some of our ideas for you.

Please note: In general for all tips, please test them carefully. Feel your way slowly with the heat. Especially if you suffer from sensitivity disorders. The reduced sensitivity to temperature can quickly cause burns.

The onion look

Several pieces of clothing on top of each other help best against the cold. There is air between the individual layers. This keeps the body warmer than a single thick sweater.

So it is best to put a T-shirt and an undershirt under the sweater. Under the sweatpants a long underpants or leggings. Special thermal underwear or clothing made of alpaca wool offers a lot of warmth here. Your local medical supply store will be happy to advise you on suitable clothing.

Attention: If you wear several pieces of clothing on top of each other, wrinkles can form. Therefore, please make sure that you do not get any pressure points and that your blood circulation is not restricted.

Heatable clothing

In the meantime you can even get heated clothing. You can equip yourself almost completely from head to toe. For cold feet you get heatable shoe soles. For a cold upper body a heatable jacket. For cold hands you get heatable gloves. The clothes have a rechargeable battery. So after a short pause for charging, you warm the clothes with small heating coils. Please make sure that you approach the heat carefully here as well.

Blanket, fur and sleeping bag

Many wheelchair users* inside use blankets, sleeping bags or fur to protect themselves from the cold. You will certainly succeed in staying warm. But especially blankets and skins can get stuck in the wheels of your wheelchair. This can lead to a fall. Therefore special care is required here. For many people, slip-bags are a compromise. These are special for the wheelchair. Therefore, jamming in the wheels happens rather rarely. But their movement is very limited. Dressing is awkward and uncomfortable. 

Extra seat and back cushions

While the apartment is being ventilated, the draught passes uncomfortably through the sides of your wheelchair? The extra seat and back cushions for the wheelchair protect you from the cold draught. The seat cushion has wings on the sides. These cover the openings on the sides of the wheelchair. In this way, it shields the draught entering from the sides. Your lower back is protected from the cool air.

Usually the bars on the footrests are also cold and sharp-edged. With the foot support pads you protect your legs against abrasions. The cold does not get to your legs through the padding.

Extra Sitz- und Rückenpolster-Set


Movement gets your circulation going. At the same time you will get warm. Even if perhaps only little exercise is possible, it is still important and healthy. Try to keep moving with small exercises. For example, discuss with your occupational therapist or physiotherapist which exercises are possible for you.

You can also move around on a walker? Or use our residential rollator Page to move around the house? For more tips on movement, read our blog article „7 tips for developing a motion routine with rollator.“

Cherry pit cushion

A cherry pit cushion provides quick warmth. It is simply heated briefly in the microwave or oven. While warming it up, always check the temperature carefully to make sure that it does not get too hot. The Cherry Pit Pillow now provides you with a pleasant warmth. And in addition it exudes a pleasant cherry scent.

Of course you can also warm and use other pit or grain cushions.

A warm bath or a hot shower

A warm bath can quickly warm you up again. With a bath lift, you can take a bath even if you can no longer get over the edge of the bath. Think also about the purchase of a shower stool. Especially when they are frozen through, a hot shower cannot last long enough. You can sit comfortably on the rotating shower stool Spa from Saljol. The seat plates are even made of the heat-reflecting material EPP.

It is best to warm up the bathroom for a few minutes. With special bath additives, for warming baths, you can additionally support the effect. Please make sure that the temperature is comfortable to avoid burns.

Spa Duschhocker

So you can also do something for your well-being at home without the direct risk of cooling down. With the right tips, you'll be able to get up in the morning without being immediately frozen. Ventilate your home. Without catching a cold in a draft. Just try out our tips. Exercise and fresh air will help you stay as healthy as possible and boost your immune system.

Do you have another hot tip on how to get a grip on freezing in cold autumn and winter days? Feel free to write us into the comments!

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