Understanding Impairment and Disability - What Is a Physical Disability?

People with physical disabilities are individuals whose bodies have impairments, activities limitations, and participations restrictions due to a diagnosed disability that adversely affects their ability to perform day-to-day activities. In the United Kingdom, those with physical disabilities may be eligible for certain benefits depending on their circumstances. This guide explains what is considered a physical disability, and details the range of benefits available to those with physical disabilities living in the UK.

What is a Physical Disability?

A physical disability is a physical impairment that results in significant difficulty with navigating and performing activities of daily living. This includes activities like walking, standing, using the restroom, bathing or dressing yourself, and even caring for yourself while managing day to day tasks. Physical disabilities can affect people’s mobility levels, strength, balance and coordination. These impairments can be caused by birth defects, accidents, disease or other factors.

Disability Categories.

Depending on the severity of the impairment and its effects, physical disabilities are categorized into three main areas – ambulatory disability, which affects walking ability; strength disability, which affects the ability to perform activities; and use of arms and legs disability, which affects fine motor activity. By classifying these impairments into distinct categories, it helps to determine what formal awards are available in order to assist those living with physical disability.

Variations on the Definition of Physical Disability.

The definition of physical disability varies from country to country. In some countries, such as the UK, physical disability is defined as an impairment which has a substantial adverse effect on an individual’s ability to carry out normal daily activities. This definition can extend further and include several different forms of mobility impairment, such as those affecting use of arms or legs and ambulatory ability. It can also include non-visible impairments that affect individuals’ mental health and well-being.

Understanding and Managing Impairment and Disabilities.

Anyone with a physical disability can experience difficult moments, so it’s important to understand how to manage your impairments and disabilities. First and foremost, it’s important to identify what accommodations you need and methods for mitigating the effects of your disability. This could include anything from using adaptive equipment to seeking counseling or implementing lifestyle changes. Additionally, people with physical disabilities may be eligible for government benefits such as financial aid, access to services and special equipment.

Access to Awards for Those Eligible in the UK

People with physical disabilities in the UK are eligible to apply for grants and awards from Sport England or the Department for Work and Pensions. These awards can be used for a variety of activities which could increase their quality of life, including improving mobility, purchasing special equipment, and helping fund educational courses. Additionally, those who identify as disabled may also benefit from concessions such as reduced transportation fares.

Add comment


There are no comments yet.