Forty years ago wheelchairs were rarely seen in public because there were no curb cuts. Deaf people could only communicate with each other face to face unless they were among the few who could read and write English well enough to send and understand letters. And many medical devices and medications didn't exist back then.
But imagine what it must have been like for people who lived a few hundred years ago. Before glasses were invented most people who needed good vision to do their work were incapable of working by the time they were fifty years old, assuming they were lucky enough to live that long.
Without antibiotics to treat infections, many people with injured limbs had them amputated, but peg-legs were much harder to live with than today's artificial limbs. Wheel chairs, if available at all, were ordinary wooden chairs with wheels attached.
People with mental illness were assumed to be possessed by demons, and might have been killed.
I could go on and on about how different things used to be. I'm glad to live now, and assume even more inventions and scientific discoveries will make lives better in the future.