How to Help Someone with Poor Mobility

Having a loved one experiencing poor mobility can be challenging for both the individual and their caregivers. Whether it’s due to aging, illness, or injury, providing appropriate assistance and support is crucial to enhancing their quality of life and preserving their independence. There are several practical ways you can help someone with poor mobility and foster an environment of empathy, compassion, and empowerment.

  • Understand their needs – The first step in assisting someone with poor mobility is to understand their unique needs and challenges.  Engage in open communication with the person to gain insights into their feelings, desires, and limitations. Be patient and empathetic, as this will help you tailor your support accordingly.
  • Make their home accessible – Create a safe and accessible environment for your loved one by making modifications to their living space.  Remove any tripping hazards, install grab rails in the bathroom, and consider adding ramps or stair lifts if necessary.  Improving accessibility will boost their confidence and reduce the risk of accidents. Help is available from your Council to assist with accessibility and equipment and your physiotherapist will be able to refer you to the right agency for help.
  • Encourage regular exercise – Encouraging and assisting the individual in performing regular exercises prescribed by their physiotherapist can significantly improve their mobility.  These exercises can include stretching, strength training, and balance exercises.  Be a supportive companion during these activities to motivate them to stay consistent. 
  • Assistive devices – If any equipment has been prescribed to the person, encourage them to use them regularly and in a safe way.  This equipment could include sticks, walkers or wheelchairs. Sometimes the person may need help with putting on braces or slings.   
  • Accompany them on outings – Individuals with poor mobility may become isolated due to difficulties in getting around.  Offer to accompany them on outings, whether it’s a trip to the supermarket, a park, or a social event.  This support will enable them to engage with the outside world and maintain a sense of connection.
  • Educate and empower – Educate yourself about the individual’s condition and treatment plan.  Attend medical appointments with them if possible and learn about any potential challenges they may face.  Empower them by encouraging self-advocacy and decision-making in matters concerning their mobility.
  • Be patient and respectful – It’s essential to be patient and allow the person with poor mobility to do as much as they can independently.  Avoid being overly intrusive or assuming they cannot manage certain tasks on their own.  Respect their autonomy and only offer help when needed or requested, even if they take a long time to complete a task.  Taking over does not help them in the long run.
  • Organise support services – Research and help them access support services that cater to individuals with mobility issues.  These services may include home care assistance, meal delivery, transportation services, and social support groups.  Connecting them with a network of resources will ease the burden and improve their overall well-being.  Generally, your local Council website is a good place to start.  Age UK and other condition specific charities can also support both the person and also yourself as their carer.  If you spend more than 35 hours a week caring for someone, you may be eligible for a Carers Allowance.
  • Emotional support – Living with limited mobility can lead to feelings of frustration, loneliness, and even depression. Offer emotional support by actively listening to their concerns, engaging in meaningful conversations, and encouraging participation in hobbies or activities they enjoy.
  • Be mindful of accessibility in public places – When going out with your loved one, choose accessible venues and destinations that accommodate their mobility needs.  Be proactive in seeking locations with proper ramps, elevators, and other amenities that facilitate easy movement.
  • Be mindful of carer stress.  Caring for someone is often a 24/7 job, 7 days a week.  Even if one is not involved all the time, the responsibility can wear people down. 
  • Ask for and accept help.  Make a list of ways in which others can help you, then let them choose how to help.
  • Focus on what you can do.  At times, you might feel like you’re not doing enough, but no one is a perfect caregiver.  Believe that you’re doing the best you can.
  • Set goals you can reach.  Break large tasks into smaller steps that you can do one at a time.  Make lists of what’s most important.  Follow a daily routine.  Say no to requests that are draining, such as hosting meals for holidays or other occasions.
  • Get connected.  Learn about caregiving resources in your area.  There might be classes you can take.  You might find caregiving services such as meal delivery or house cleaning.
  • Join a support group.  People in support groups know what you’re dealing with.  They can cheer you on and help you solve problems.  A support group also can be a place to make new friends.
  • Seek social support.  Stay connected to family and friends who support you.  Make time each week to visit with someone, even if it’s just a walk or a quick cup of coffee.
  • Take care of your health.  Find ways to sleep better.  Move more on most days.  Eat a healthy diet and keep hydrated.
  • Many caregivers have trouble sleeping.  Good sleep is important for health.  If you have trouble getting a good night’s sleep, talk to your health care professional.
  • If you are speaking with your doctor or a health professional, let them know that you’re a caregiver.  Talk about worries or symptoms you have.

Helping someone with poor mobility requires a combination of empathy, patience, and practical assistance.  By understanding their unique needs, providing a safe and accessible environment, and encouraging regular exercise, our physiotherapists at the Home Physio Group can play a vital role in enhancing their quality of life. The support and understanding can make a significant difference in their journey towards living with greater independence and dignity.

For more information please contact us on 0330 335 1016 or alternatively please fill out our contact sheet and we will get back to you.

Meet our physios

All our physiotherapists are registered with the CSP and HCPC offering the highest standard of care

Ready to recover?

Call us on 0330 335 1016
You can discuss your requirements with one of our specialist case managers

Why choose Home Physio Group?

We are a dedicated team of Chartered Physiotherapists working exclusively in your home and providing the highest level of care. We recognise the importance of knowing that you are in safe hands and being looked after. With this is mind, our client management team are here to assist you every step of the way and will answer any questions you may have. We are passionate about helping you to reach your goals, relieve your pain, and improve your mobility.

The benefits of using our service include:

  • All our physiotherapists are hand-picked professionals with years of experience
  • We are registered with the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) and Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC). All our physiotherapists are checked by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) 
  • We will arrange visits in your own home (or care home or place of work) at a convenient time to you
  • We work at speed and do not have a waiting list
  • We offer daytime, evening and weekend appointments
  • Our team work closely with the country’s leading consultants and specialists in their field
  • You will always have the same physiotherapist visiting you at home
  • You can have as many visits as you require
  • Our fixed pricing structure can be provided in writing so that you can consider it in your own time
  • We believe there is no “one size fits all” approach to care. Your personalised programme and treatment strategy will be unique to you