When people begin to grow old, the start having difficulty when trying to accomplish different simple tasks such as sitting and standing from the chair. If you’re an elderly person who is very independent that still wants to be able to complete most of their tasks by yourself, invest on a lift chair.
Finding the perfect lift chair isn’t as easy as you might think. There are a lot of things involved which can be quite overwhelming. The following are some pointers to help you know everything about lift chair and what to expect of them when you buy one.
What are Lift Chairs?
Lift chairs are seats designed using a recliner-style and are operated with a motor enabling the user to transform to a seated position easily. The mechanism behind the lift chair pushes the whole chair from below enabling the user to stand without difficulty. Although this sounds like a luxury to some people, it’s a very important function to most seniors.
The elderly can use a lift chair to help them transform from a sitting to standing position comfortably and safely. Josie Rhoades, the vice president of clinical operations at a national private duty medical and home care staff franchise known as Bright Star Care said, “the elderly who have difficulty sitting and standing need some for of assistance to help reduce pain and possibly easy anxiety.” An elderly person who struggles with sitting and standing independently tends to rely on their hands and they can easily slip or harm themselves.
The reclining position found in most lift chairs is very beneficial to the elderly. “The elderly need the reclining and lifting functions of these chairs most of the time because they help them to elevate their legs which is good for decreasing excess fluid buildup and increases the circulation in the legs,” says Rhoades.
Types of Lift Chairs
Rhoades says that lift chairs are classified in three different categories:
These are the most basic lift chairs. They offer the user with a reclining angle of 45-degree, enabling them to seat while leaning back slightly. The chair has a motor used in controlling the footrest, reclining capabilities and lifting capabilities.
“The footrest always extends whenever the backrest is reclined,” says Rhoads. “The cannot function independently.” These types of lift chairs are normally used for reading or watching TV and the best part about them is that they don’t require a lot of space.
These type of lift chairs can be reclined a little further to position that has them almost flat. They have a single motor, meaning that the backrest and the footrest don’t function independently.
“The user is positioned in a slight ‘V’ at the hips when seating, the backrest will the recline leaving the backrest and feet higher than the hips,” says Rhoades. Since the chair can be reclined this far, it’s perfect for naps and the perfect choice for seniors who can’t lie flat on a bed.
3. Infinite position
This is the most versatile (and most likely the most expensive) option available. This lift chair with infinite position provides the user with complete recline from both the footrest and backrest parallel to the floor.
“Lift chairs with infinite position normally have two motors,” says Rhoades. “The first motor is used to control the backrest while the other are used to control the footrest, enabling the user to be positioned in a siting position as their legs are extended.”
Before you purchase a lift chair with infinite position (also referred to as a zero-gravity chair), consult with your physician, because this position isn’t suitable for the elderly.
Best Power Lift Chairs for Elderly (Seniors)
BUY ON AMAZON
This is one of the best [power lift chairs for the elderly available in the market. It includes various different features including;
- Massage and heat. This electric lift chair also has an extending footrest, lumber heating and eight levels of massage and vibration. You’ll be able to select three-time models and four massage models and five massage models which can all be selected using a remote control.
- Power lift capability for seniors. The chair has a counter balance mechanism making it the best lift chair for the elderly since they’ll be able to stand and sit without difficulty. This in turn helps the user stand comfortably without increasing stress on their knees or back. The chair can be reclined to various positions allowing you settle on what feels comfortable. It can accommodate a weight capacity of up to 330 lbs, making it the best choice for people with back or leg issues or someone who is recovering from surgery.
- Can be Assembled Easily. According to the chair’s manual, it can be assembled within 10 minutes or less. The parts are placed in two boxes, and you’ll be able to contact the company in case you experience any challenges.
- Well Suited for the Living Room. The chair is pretty compact and the headrest, backrest and footrest can be adjusted from a 90 degree to 150-degree angle. This is one of the best power lift chairs for elderly for napping, watching television and reading.
- Cup holders and USB Charging ports. The chair is designed with dual USB outlets which you can use to charge your electronic devices. Also available are dual side pockets, two cup holders on each side of the arm rest for when you need somewhere to place your drinks.
BUY ON AMAZON
This is also one of the best lift chairs for the elderly available out there. It comprises of the following features:
- Friendly design. The legs on this lift chair are adjustable and can stretch out. The chair’s backrest is also adjustable enabling the user to lie or sit on it from different angles.
- Heating and Massage Features. The chair comes inclusive of heating and massage features. You can set different vibration levels on the massage function.
- Remote control function. The chair’s design includes a lift function which can be adjusted with a remote control. If you’re not able to stand easily, or your feet can’t reach the floor surface, you can adjust the chair without difficulty so that you’re able to stand.
- Easy to Assemble. The chair can be assembled in as a maximum of 20 minutes while using the company’s instruction manual and tools. Thanks to the excellent material and structure, you’ll be able to finish assembling it within no time.
BUY ON AMAZON
There are several reliable features found on this model, making one of the best lift chairs for the elderly. They include:
- Lumbar Heating and Vibration Massage. The chair comprises of eight different levels of vibration massage and lumbar heat. The function can be controlled with a remote control.
- Esright support. The company’s offers top notch customer service where the questions asked are replied to within 24 hours.
- Power Lift Chair with Silent Motor. The chair is powered using a TUV certified actuator which helps in pushing it up without difficulty enabling the user to stand with ease. You can use a remote control to adjust the reclining level to suit your preference (goes up to 145 degrees).
- Durable and Easy to clean. The lift chair was designed using high-quality material that can be cleaned without difficulty. The material is also perfect in terms of comfort.
- Side pockets and Cup holders. You’ll find two side pocket and cup holders where you can place drinks and store small items.
BUY ON AMAZON
Some of the features found on this chair making it one of the best chairs for the elderly include:
- Durable upholstery and Easy to clean. This lift chair is designed with faux leather of very high quality that can be cleaned easily and still provide the user with superior aesthetics and comfort. You can use a damp or dry cloth that is lint free (you don’t have to use any wax or oils).
- Lower noise and TUV Certifies Actuator. The motor used in the chair is certified by the TUV and has been found to provide the best performance, lengthy performance and have silent performance.
- Power Lift Assistance. The chair’s motor is not only TUV certified, it also uses a counter-balance lift mechanism which moves it up enabling the user to stand with ease. The process is very smooth and will help prevent any additional strain on one’s back and knees. You’ll also be able to operate the chair from any reclining to lift position of your choice using a remote control.
- Assembling options. The chair requires some “Expert Assembly” services which is provided by Amazon. You’ll have to select the service independently and add it to your shopping cart as you place the order for the lift chair and schedule an installation appointment with them.
- Cup Holders and USB Charging Ports. The chair is designed with two USB outlets that you can use to charge your gadgets. Also available are two side pockets for storing small items. Let’s not forget the dual cup holders on either side of the armrest to help hold your beverages.
BUY ON AMAZON
This is the last chair on our list of the best power lift chairs for seniors. It has some unique features that qualify it as a great option for seniors who have difficulty sitting and standing by themselves. They include:
- Chair with a Power Lift Recliner. You’ll find a button on the side of the chair which helps in controlling the recline and lift functions. This enables the user to adjust the chair in the position they want using angles between 110 to 150 degrees. The lift function is powered using an electric motor mechanism that helps to push the whole chair up without making any noise enabling the user to stand without difficulty. This is the best option for a patient after surgery or people with back and leg issues.
- Deeper Seat and Extended Backrest. This chair was designed with bigger people in mind as it has a wider power lift recliner seat that can be used by most seniors in America. The length of the backrest measures 25.6 inches and can fit almost anyone. The seat’s depth is about 20.9 inches providing the user with the best support possible on the legs and hips.
- Easy to Assemble and Great Service. The lift chair is packed in three different boxes which are shipped to customers at the same time. However, the packages may not arrive at your door step at the same time, so don’t start assembling the chair until you’ve received all of them. The assembling process is pretty simple and you won’t need any tools.
- Lumbar Heat and Massage. The chair comes with four powerful massage functions (lumbar, back, legs and thighs). There are also five massage mode to choose from alongside each massage function that can be operated independently. The timer settings can be set in 15/30/60 minutes intervals allowing the user to enjoy their massages. You can use two different lumbar heating functions to provide you with better blood circulation in the body. This is a great way for you to ensure you have complete body relaxation.
- Concealed Cup Holders and USB Charging Ports. You’ll find a USB outlet on the lift chair which you can use to charge all your devices. Also available are dual side pockets that the user can use to store small items that they may need. The chair also has two cup holders that are concealed providing the user with the best home theater experience. NOTE: The USB port were designed for low power gadgets like an iPad or iPhone.
Pro and Cons of Lift Chairs
Apart from being comfortable furniture, lift chairs also comprise of several emotional and physical benefits.
- Lift chairs enable the elderly to maintain their independence.
- The chairs help the elderly with mobility. It was found that the elderly sit and stand easier and fast when using a lift chair.
- They help decrease the chances of falling as well as medical intervention.
- According to Rhoades, the chairs are good for alleviating pressure from the legs offering the user with better circulation.
- Lift chair are can help reduce anxiety in seniors because they don’t have to keep for assistance from other people whenever they need to sit or stand.
On the other hand, lift chairs also have some drawbacks.
- The chairs can be quite expensive.
- They are not well suited for everyone. “Lift chairs are not the perfect solution for those who have a challenge balancing or face difficulties when standing straight without assistance.” says Rhoades.
- Seniors using lift chairs without assistance can be dangerous over time. “If an elderly person uses a lift chair on a regular basis they can reduce their muscle strength further because they won’t be using their muscles as much as required,” says Rhodes.
Features of the Best Lift Chairs
There are numerous things to put into consideration when shopping for the right lift chair. There are instances where you’ll have to consult with your physician concerning which lift chair will be suitable for you.
- Position options. Rhoades emphasizes on how important it is to find out the number of positions a lift chair comes with as well as figuring out the positions that are suitable for your situation. For example, if you intend to be sleeping on the lift chair, you should opt for the infinite position or three-position chair instead of one that comprises of two-positions.
- Look into the type of material that was used in designing the chair and if possible, make sure you try it out while it’s still at the store. “Depending on a person’s specific requirements or comfort level, some elderly people require a chair that is firmer,” says Rhoades.
- There are lift chairs that are very large in size so make sure you measure the one you’re planning to purchase because you’ll want it to fit perfectly in your space. “Don’t clutter the space where the chair is going to be placed so that the user doesn’t slip and fall while walking towards it,” added Rhoades.
- Weight capacity. Find out the kind of weight capacity the lift chair has. Since it functions with the help of a motor, you want to avoid putting excess weight on it on a regular basis. The maximum weight capacity requirement of most lift chairs is 300 pounds. However, you’ll can also find those that offer a higher weight capacity.
- A non-sip bottom. Your lift chair should be slide proof because you don’t want to keep worrying about the user off it while trying to sit or stand. Check whether or not the chair is sturdy and includes a non-slip grip.
- Fun features. There are lift chairs that come with a variety of unnecessary features that aren’t meant for medical use. However, such features tend to improve the chair’s overall experience. Some of these features are cup holders, massage capabilities, wireless remote controls and USB charging ports.
Price Range of Lift Chairs for Elderly
Rhoades says that the price range of the best lift chairs range from $600 up to more than $1,000. This all depends on the kind of additional features you opt for. For instance, an infinite position lift chair costs a lot more money compared to a two-position lift chair.
If you’re shopping for the perfect lift chair to invest in for long-term use, consider renting one before purchasing one. You can find such services from a medical equipment rental store in your neighborhood. Also, these stores rent out lift chairs at a reasonably lower price compared to the actual selling prices.
Can Lift Chairs Be Insured?
You’ll be able to insure a lift chair after your doctor officially notes how medically necessary it is and also files the information with the insurance company you use. Rhoades says that you need the following requirements before your lift chair can be insured:
- The patient is suffering from severe arthritis of the knee or hip or ails from a serious neuromuscular disease.
- The patient cannot stand up straight from a normal chair without assistance.
- Once the patient is standing, they cannot walk without a cane or walker or without assistance from someone else. If the patient has to be transferred from the lift chair onto a wheelchair, insurance companies often refuse paying to these kind of mobility levels.
- The lift mechanism of the seat of the best lift chair for the elderly is considered as part of a physician’s course of treatment for slow deterioration or affects improvement of a patient’s condition.
If you’re looking to purchase the best lift chair for the elderly, there are several important things to consider. They include, the kind of features found on the chair, how much you’re willing to spend on a lift chair, the kind of disease the user is suffering from, the user’s ability to support themselves when sitting and standing and many others.
However, if the person who intends to use the chair isn’t sure about what to get, they can consult with their physician for further assistance. You don’t want to purchase a lift chair that will only worsen someone’s health condition.
There are features which are not medically necessary in lift chairs such as a cup holder, massage capabilities, wireless remote controls and USB charging ports. However, these features can help improve the user’s overall experience.
The above are the best power lift chairs for elderly citizens.