Mobility Aids For Seniors – Reducing the Risk of Falls
“I really can’t wait to move into a nursing home,” said no one ever. One of the main reasons that seniors have to move into a skilled nursing or assisted living facility, is due to their risk or history of falling. Some of the mobility aids for seniors that Brilliant! Medical Boutique offers can reduce your risk of falling.
Our lift chairs are comfortable recliners with a lift mechanism that safely lifts you up from a seated position into a standing position. The lift chair should then be kept in the “up” position and when you come back to sit down again, you can simply lean against the chair and safely lower yourself back into a seated position.
Some lift chairs are also made for sleeping and can fully recline to a supine position. The MaxiComfort Series with Twilight (made by Golden Technologies) can also elevate your feet to a position slightly higher than your heart, which is perfect for reducing swelling in your feet and legs.
Other mobility aids for seniors that reduce the risk of falling are transfer benchs for your bathroom. A transfer bench is a plastic bench that is intended to use during a shower. It has two suction cup feet that go inside the bathtub, and two regular rubber tipped feet that stay outside of the bathtub. If stepping over the side of the bathtub, into a slippery tub poses a risk for you or your loved one, you might consider getting a transfer bench. Once installed, the transfer bench goes over the side of the bathtub. To safely use a transfer bench, you simply sit down on the bench (outside of the bathtub), turn your body to face the faucet, and then you scoot across the bench into the tub. You do have to lift your feet up over the edge of the bathtub, but you aren’t stepping over and risking a fall.
(RANDOM TIP: The downside of a transfer bench is that the shower door or curtain won’t close all the way. I advise our customers to get a cheap shower curtain, or even just the clear shower curtain liner, and cut it at the point where the bench enters the tub. That way you can make a “V” that opens around the transfer bench, but you can still keep most of the water off of the bathroom floor.)
Slipping in your bathtub or struggling to get up from a recliner are two very specific ways that people can fall in their home, but if you have trouble walking or lose your balance frequently, you can fall anywhere. Get the proper piece of mobility equipment BEFORE you fall.
My grandmother, we called her Gree, lived to be 93. She was very active and loved getting out. Once when she came to visit we took her to Northpark Mall in Dallas. She was always a very put together woman and she dreamed of high heels long after she stopped wearing them. We browsed the shoe section at Nordstrom, and I was amused by how she looked and touched all the pretty shoes. Gree also was a stubborn woman, and she did not want to use her rollator. She told me it was too “conspicuous.” But the only way we could take her to the mall that day, was to take that rollator along with us. I think she began to see how useful it was after that trip!
A rollator is a four-wheeled walker that has breaks and a seat. It is a very convenient piece of equipment, especially for people who need the assistance of a walker, but who also still want to go to the mall to look at pretty shoes. Whenever Gree needed to sit down that day, she had a rolling chair right with her! I am so thankful we had that day together, and we wouldn’t have had it without that rollator.
Other types of mobility aids for seniors include canes, walkers, wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs and scooters. If you aren’t sure which piece of equipment is right for you, you can always talk to your doctor. We can also let you try out different pieces of equipment to help you decide what is right for you.
If you or a loved one is struggling with bathroom safety, having mobility issues, or if you think a lift chair would make life a little more comfortable, we hope you’ll reach out and let us know how we can serve you.
Stay safe, Jamie