[Source: Assistive Technology via Your Therapy Source]
Assistive Technology published research on social skills and early powered mobility. The participants included 23 children with physical disabilities between the ages of 18 months and 6 years of age. Data was collected at wheelchair evaluation, wheelchair delivery, and approximately 6 months later. The following results were seen:
- significant increases were found in parental perceptions of positive social skills for younger children after receiving a wheelchair
- slightly older children showed improvements in social skills before the wheelchair was received
- no changes were found in negative social skills
- parental ratings also indicated a significantly greater difficulty remaining engaged in tasks after receiving a wheelchair
- a significant increase was noted in the number of mobility activities during indoor free play but no difference was seen in interaction with toys or objects
- improvement in the qualitative level of outdoor interactive free play was reported but there was no change in verbal interactions.
Reference: Guerette P, Furumasu J, Tefft D. The positive effects of early powered mobility on children’s psychosocial and play skills. Assist Technol. 2013 Spring;25(1):39-48; quiz 49-50.