Monday, June 30, 2014

How to Choose a Home Chair Lift

A Home Chair Stair Lift Can Make Life Easier For Seniors

The prospect of climbing stairs can sometimes put a damper on your independence.  It’s natural to find that mobility and flexibility are reduced as you grow older, but that should not stand in the way of getting to the second floor of your home.  Your home stair lift, along with your emergency alert system, will help you in times of need.

What is a home stair lift?

A home stair lift is a chair that allows you to sit down while you are being lifted to the top of the stairs.  Elevator and specialty lift companies install these in the homes of those who are unable to navigate stairs on their own.

What types of home stair lifts are there?

The type of lift that you get installed in your home depends on the type of stairs that you have.

The simpler version of a stair lift is the straight lift.  This chair lift goes from the bottom to the top of the stairs without any curves, turns, or landings.  It is usually installed within a day or two.

The more involved stair lift is the curved stair lift.  This home chair lift is installed on stairwells that have bends, landings, and other features.   The time that it takes to install depends on your stairwell’s level of intricacy.

Should I purchase or get a rental?
Renting a chair lift system is an excellent option for those who are facing temporary mobility issues.  It is also appropriate for those who wish to try out the system.  As getting a home stair lift is an investment, it is sometimes wise to try before you buy.

Chair lifts range in price, depending on your requirements and situation. They can range from $1,000 to $10,000 depending on the design of the stair set and the quality of the product.

Will insurance pay for a home stair lift?

Medicare classifies a stair chair lift as being a home improvement, and therefore not covered under its umbrella.

Medicaid will help to subsidize some of the costs, but only with specific vendors.   The best avenue if you have Medicaid is to check and see.

Many private insurance companies will cover a portion of the costs of getting a home stair lift installed in the home.  The request to the insurance company should be presented along with written justification from a medical professional.

For the elderly, there are programs in place which can assist with the costs of installing a stair chair lift.   Before you start talking with vendors, find out how much your insurance company is willing to pay.  They might be able to point you in the right direction when it comes to specific vendors in your area.

Who will install my stair chair lift?

That’s up to you, of course.  Our suggestions are that you find someone who has been installing lifts for several years, offers a free in-home estimate, and makes you feel comfortable with the entire process.  You will find the names of many stair lift vendors by typing ‘stair chair lift’ and your city name into the search engine of your choice (stair chair lift Denver, for example).

Choosing the right stair chair lift is just as important as choosing the right medical alert bracelets.  Take a few minutes to really think about what you want to see in your lift, and you’ll be able to make a great decision

Monday, June 16, 2014

It’s 2AM. Do you know where your grandma is? The GPS Medical Alert System Does

GPS Medical Alert Systems Can Track Your Location And Tell EMS Where You Are In An Emergency

The basic senior alert system functions well in the home, but what happens when a frail loved one falls outside of the home, while they’re exercising, or on vacation?  Can you be absolutely sure that your favorite senior citizens are staying within the 1,000 foot range of their conventional medical alert bracelet? The GPS medical alert bracelet performs anywhere there is cell phone coverage.

The Difference Between Basic and GPS Medical Alert Systems

A basic medical alert system is made up of two components, a call box and a medical alert bracelet. When a senior citizen has fallen or otherwise needs assistance, they push the button on the bracelet. That sends a signal to the call box, and the call box contacts a call center. Once the senior citizen is connected to the call center, they can explain the situation. The call center will evaluate the situation, contacting emergency personnel and family members as needed.

The GPS medical alert system relies on the cellular network in the area to transmit a signal to a medical alert call center.  This functions in the same way as the basic version of the senior alert system.  The GPS medical alert system ALSO transmits the coordinates of the medical alert bracelet so that emergency personnel can be directed to the proper location.  Knowing the exact location of that loved one can save precious minutes.

A GPS Medical Alert System Lets You Travel

If you or your loved one enjoys traveling, but you’re afraid of trips and spills, the GPS medical alert system provides peace of mind.  Since the button push puts you in contact with a medical professional wherever you go, you can keep exploring and enjoying the world without worrying about having a personal medical safety net.  It’s already there.

A GPS Enabled Senior Alert System Locates Loved Ones

There are some senior citizens who have difficulty with Alzheimer’s and other conditions which lead to decreased mental faculties.  The GPS medical alert system works well for those loved ones who tend to wander from home to try to find their old classmates, friends, and others.   Just by pressing the button on the medical alert bracelet, the senior citizen notifies someone of their location so they can be picked up, safe and sound.
While there are situations where you and your loved ones might need only the basic medical alert system, a GPS medical alert system not only pinpoints the senior citizen’s location, but it brings help faster.

Note: GPS bracelets are bracelets with GPS systems built in. This is not a watch with GPS.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Bathroom Safety for Elderly People

Make Your Bathroom Safe for the Elderly At Home

The bathroom is one of the most private areas in the home, and also one of the most dangerous for the elderly. It is very common for bathroom floors to become slippery. This leads to fall hazards that are especially harmful due to so many objects around. A sink, a toilet seat, or a bathtub could cause potentially fatal injuries if someone were to fall hard on them.

The Main Reason for Medical Care Bracelet Use

Medical care bracelets are used to call emergency services, and falls are the most common uses for them. A fall can be caused by more than just a slippery floor. Many elders find it difficult to stand for long, even for things they’ve done all their life. Others have problems standing back up. Another problem is toiletries that are now too far away for the elder’s range of motion. One reach too far and they may instead have to reach for their medical alert bracelet instead of the shampoo.

Tips for Elderly Care in the Bathroom

There are several elderly care safety items that you can install in a bathroom to make things safer for seniors. Just a few of these improvements can dramatically make the quality of life of your loved one higher.
  • First, have a medical alert bracelet. No safety feature is foolproof. Make sure that your elder can get care in an emergency by having access to a medical alert system, especially if they live alone. This small piece of equipment could save your loved one’s life.

  • Ask your loved one what problems they have moving around in the bathroom, and find features to address them. You may be surprised to find out what they consider to be a challenge. If they are resistant to changes, try to de
    bathroom safety
    monstrate how the new features can help. Clear demonstrations can do far more than insistence.

  • Install anchor grab bars and non-skid mats inside the shower area. Test these to see if they work after installing. Fake a fall and grab hard onto the bar to make sure it will hold.

  • If they have trouble moving in the shower, put in a shower stool so they can sit and clean themselves. Elderly care stores carry these.

  • Replace the shower head to one with a long hose. This can reduce the amount of movement needed in the shower and prevent a fall.
  • Make sure that the hot and cold faucets are labeled very clearly. It can take one wrong twist to cause a nasty burn.

  • Install night lights along the route to the bathroom and in the bathroom itself.

  • If you have tile or linoleum installed, consider getting textured tile flooring.

  • If there are any rugs that slip or bunch when walked on, these need to be replaced with non-skid mats.

  • If they have trouble sitting down low or standing up for long, have a stool nearby so they can sit while using the sink.

  • Consider getting a raised toilet seat or a toilet lift if they have trouble sitting up from low positions.

  • If they are unable to wipe themselves completely, install a bidet to assist.

By using these tips, you can help your loved one stay independent for longer and give them a higher quality of life. Do consider signing up with a medical alert system as well in case of an emergency.

bathroom safety for seniors infographic
Infographic provided by Medical Care Alert