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Heather Mills - Amputee Forum
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Do you have to plan ahead when going out?

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I have to at the moment. If Im going to a new pub or club or even someones house I have to check ahead to make sure theres not a massive flight of stairs to get in. Or like I found a few weeks ago a nice street level club but once you were inside you discover that the toilets are up a very steep long flight of stairs.

Do the leg prosthesis users have to do this? Or can you tackle the stairs?

Also does anyone know if these places have to provide disabled access by law (UK)?

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It's not something I bother about as I can take stairs foot-over-foot going down and one at a time going up. Amputees can climb stairs, its just something else you need to learn to do differently. As you become more confident you'll find its something you'll worry about less and less.

Best Wishes

Mandy

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Dawn,

I never plan ahead because if I did that then I'd spend more time on the phone then doing what I want to do. I don't really like stairs I they are a hassle even for me as a BK but I am able to get up them I just make sure I use the hand rails when going up or down..... :-)

Not that I can't climb stairs it's just that once I had a lot of confidence that I could run up and down them until I was going down a set of stairs one day something lying on the stairs caught my attention in the corner of my eye and I fell and bumped all the way to the bottom on my bottom... only a few steps but a few to many... so now I take extra caution when going up and down stairs.

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I find I have to plan ahead more if I'm going somewhere outside than if visiting someone's house or restaurant. This dictates what shoes I'll wear, or whether I'll plan on bringing a walking stick or cane, depending on whether I'll be on uneven terrain or trying to walk in sand (a real pain!). In fact, the only stairways I've had trouble with have been some on outdoor walkways in parks that are narrow. slippery, or have no handrails. Also, some "rustic" steps are not level and, boy, can they be a problem when your foot doesn't bend! Really steep hills have always been troublesome for me, too, although I suppose this is more of a conditioning/fitness problem than an inherent problem with my prosthesis.

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I guess it becomes part of your routine to think ahead a bit and going someplace you've never been before and is potentially troublesome might cause a little extra concern, but that's about it.

Now for the extreme. I don't recommend going to see the pyramids in Mexico without some serious phyching up. The story is I went a couple of years ago and I never really thought I'd be inclined to climb them, but once I got there I couldn't resist and it became a huge thing with me to get up at least to the fist level of one of the pyramids. If you've ever been there, you know what I mean!! If you haven't been there, all I can say is bring all the energy and imagination you have. These things are STEEP!!

I managed to get up to the first level, but it took me ages and left me drained, but at the end I felt like I'd climbed Everest. Whatever you do, though, don't take your leg on this particular trip.

The one good thing is I saw lots of people sitting on their butts, just like me. The only difference is they were climbing down and I was climbing the last fifth or so. They're THAT steep!!

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