Cell phones for quadriplegics and paraplegics


You can ring my bell, oh yes you can. Cell phones are one of the best things to happen to people with disabilities. They give us a lifeline, they are the givers of independence. Just think, how many times has your cell phone saved you from a possibly dangerous situation?

But using a cell phone isn’t easy if you have a high level spinal cord injury.  From hitting the keys to holding the phone, all of this can be incredibly hard for people with quadriplegia. Even if you’re a paraplegic, it can be tricky to find a safe spot to store your phone.  Check out these three phone-inspired videos showing the best tips for cell phones for quadriplegics including cool phone adaptations and tricks for using the keys (straight from the horse’s mouth, a C5-6 quad, herself).

Our first video comes from a little known adapted technology company in Florida called Multimedia Designs. They’ve created the BlueAnt S4 Max Speakerphone, one of the really slick cell phones for quadriplegics who use Bluetooth-enabled phones. Not surprisingly, Bluetooth phones have become the standard for quads with no arm movement because they’re so versatile with hands-free technology.

In their official video for this product, watch an older gentleman with a C2 spinal cord injury demonstrate how the S4 Max Speakerphone works. It’s all done via voice obviously, and it automatically connects to your cell phone’s built-in voice dialing feature a great option for phones for quadriplegics.  The man in the video has quite a sense of humor too. He’s around 60, and calls his buddy to see if he can bring him a six pack of beer before coming over. Watch the video (and laugh)

Our second video tackles one of the trickiest things to master if you’re a C5-6 quad – dialing buttons on a phone. For quads who still like using their Blackberries or maybe they have another kind of phone with buttons (and haven’t switched over to the touch screen yet), this video is for you. Watch as Crystal, a sweet 30 something quad we’ve profiled before, show how she braces her thumb to type.  Watch her skills (make sure to fast-forward to the end of the video to watch the clip)

And if you’ve always wanted a pimped out chair that could take care of your cell phone needs, you’ll love this video from a disabled Iraqi Freedom veteran. He’s completely transformed his Quickie powerchair and added several cool features, and for his cell phone especially. He added a bicycle cell phone mount on the front of the chair so it’s easily accessible and he added a car adapter charging port so he can charge his cell phone while he’s driving. See his bright orange wheelchair for yourself

If there’s a will there’s a way, especially if the technology is as critical as a cell phone. Remember, there’s always a way to make a cell phone work for your unique abilities.

What phone adaptations have rocked your world? What cell phones for quadriplegics do you recommend? 

 What the videos about phones for quadriplegics!

C2 quad using a Bluetooth phone using a hands free controller

C5-6 quad’s tips for using her Blackberry

Pimped out chair with a bicycle cell phone holder + charger

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