Wondering about the ins and outs of stair lifts? Or maybe you don’t even know what a stair lift is. Assuming the reader needs education, I’ll start back at the beginning. Let’s start with what a stair lift is and why someone would need a stair lift (also referred to as a chair lift.)
Perhaps you’ve heard a loved one talking about wanting to retire in a one story house. The reason this person wants a one story is simple: he or she knows the day will come when stairs are difficult to ascend and descend. In most case, a home without stairs is the best option for an elderly person for the simple reason that stairs can be difficult to navigate. Enter the stair lift. Now, this same elderly individual has access to the upstairs as well as the downstairs. With the stair lift, the entire home is now accessible! Instead of changing their familiar daily routines because of the unsurmountable obstacle that the stairs represent, the elderly can maintain their independence of mobility and their self-sufficiency, qualities that we all consider part of our identity.
It’s true that elderly people can–as I previously suggested–move houses, but saying goodbye to the home in which you have made decades of memories alongside your loved ones can be a true heartbreak. Another suggestion made has been to install a residential elevator, and though this elevator idea would provide the same convenience and self-sufficiency that a stair lift would, the elevator is often cost prohibitive. The most cost- effective and useful option, then, is the chair lift. The stair lift is easy to install and can provide a world of benefit to someone wanting full mobility. This benefit includes, as previously mentioned, the ability to move around the house unassisted and the ability to be self-sufficient, but the benefits also include protection from the injury–and the dramatically harmful effects–of a fall down the stairs. Elderly people’s relatives can rest easy, knowing that their parents or grandparents, aunts or uncles, are safe and protected, not in danger of serious injury via a fall.
Once you’ve decided that the stair lift is the right choice, you will need to consider a few elements of the lift. First, have a close look at exterior packaging. This package allows the stair lifts to be used not only indoors but also outdoors. Also, you will need to consider safety features. The keyed stair chair is only operable when a key is in place and turned on. Now, look at the control features included with the particular chair. A hand held pendant control, for example, allows the caregiver to operate the lift while the standing lift allows the senior to stand up when he or she prefers standing to sitting or cannot sit for some physical reason. After considering controls, look at the capacities for the owner’s height and weight. Know that most chair lifts are designed for individuals 300 pounds and under, but some are built for individuals over 300 pounds. The standard seat depth is 18 inches, comfortably accommodating individuals six feet tall and under. If the individual is over 6 feet tall, he or she should consider a different seat depth.