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Taking Care Of Your Walking Stick
A walking stick is one of the indispensable disability aids that assist people with mobility limitations walk around and stay self-reliant. As it is a necessary disability aid, you need to ensure that you take proper care of it so that it lasts longer.
So, let's understand the care, maintenance, and cleaning tips you can follow for both wooden variant and metal variant.
1. Wooden Variant
Clean it regularly
Often when you ramble, dirt and mud may stick to your stick. Over time, this dirt may collect and peel off the protective varnish layer, penetrate deep into the wood, and cause the grain fibers to tear apart. To avoid this damage, wipe off the mud and dirt on a regular basis with the help of a clean damp cloth. Ensure that the cloth is non-abrasive and lint-free.
Keep it dry
As wood is porous and liable to expand when wet and contract when dry, it reduces the overall tensile strength over time. Further, continuous exposure to moisture for a long time may flake off the varnish and cause it to rot. Even though the water does not cause any immediate harm, ensure that you dry it properly immediately after use - especially during the rainy season. A non-abrasive cloth would be advisable to wipe off the moisture to avoid any scratches. Store it in a dry place when not in use.
Select the storage place wisely
Wrong selection of the storage place of your stick can incur damage. Refrain from keeping the stick in both moist areas and in direct sunlight or heat. While moisture can cause wood to lose strength, direct sunlight can cause development of cracks due to excessive temperature. Similarly, avoid keeping it next to a stove, heater, furnace, or any other source of excess heat.
Check for scratches or nicks
As you use your stick for a number of excursions, it may wear or tear down over time. Keep checking your stick thoroughly for any scratches or nicks weekly or fortnightly. If any bits are loose or chip off, removing them rather than letting them get worse is a good idea. If possible, you can also try gluing those pieces together and varnish that part to upkeep the overall good appearance.
Use wrist strap and ferrules for additional safety
If you get tired and drop off your stick accidentally too often when walking, it may cause cracks or breaks. To avoid this damage, you may want to use a wrist strap to prevent them from falling.
The bottom of the stick is the part that comes in contact directly with the ground. Therefore, it is most likely to wear down faster. To prevent this wear, always use a ferrule. A ferrule saves your stick bottom from wear and tear due to high pressure. It also increases the contact area with the ground and improves grip. Keep replacing them on a timely basis based on the extent of the wear.
2. Metal Variant
Before going to the care tips for a metal variant, you need to understand one thing. Most of the care tips for this variant are similar to those for the wooden variant.
The tips that differ from those for the wooden variant are as follows:
Clean it regularly
As metals generally tend to be more susceptible to contamination or reaction, cleaning your metal stick is crucial. Refer to the cleaning tips and procedure from the instruction manual first. Use only the liquid disinfectant mentioned in the instruction manual.
If it allows cleaning with a detergent, ensure that you don't use a harsh detergent on the metal surface. Only after you wipe it off properly and remove all the moisture, keep it in its place. It is because moisture, harsh detergents, or any low-quality unrecommended mediocre disinfectant or sanitizer liquid can cause damage and rust.
To upkeep the good appearance and give the metal better protection, polish your metal stick with a silver polish on a timely basis. When polishing, wearing gloves, and using a clean cloth is highly preferable.
In a Nutshell
Just like all other disability aids, a walking stick also requires proper maintenance and care. However, by following the above-mentioned tips, you can ensure its longer life just like all other disability aids.
View More : https://www.essentialaids.com/mobility/walking-sticks-canes-accessories.html
Essential Aids provides disability aids, mobility equipment and rehabilitation products to people in the UK.
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