Saturday, 9 August 2008

Stair Safety

As we get older, often our sense of balance deteriorates and we are less likely to be able to recover if we trip or stumble. Of those over 65, 1 in 3 will fall at least once a year. In addition, at least 70% of all hospital stays that are related to an injury are as a result of a fall. This is part of the reason that stairs are so dangerous, but many have discovered how a simple lifting device called a stair lift can dramatically reduce this risk.

It is estimated that there are at least 600 people die every year from falling down the stairs. Many elderly people just stop using the upper regions of their home in order to protect themselves from falling down the stairs, but this means that you might have to stop using a large portion of your home. A stair lift is a much better way to ensure stair safety, while allowing you to use all portions of your home. A stair lift is a personal lifting aid that usually attaches directly to the stair case and carries a person up and down the stairs. Those that have a straight stair case can quickly and inexpensively have a stair lift installed. A length of track is attached directly to the stairs. After the track has been secured, an electric motor with a mounted chair, called a car, is attached to the track. The car is responsible for carrying the user up and down the stairs.

Stair lifts usually install on the side of the stairs and it is important to ensure that you do not set objects down in the stair lifts path. All quality stair lifts have built in sensors that detect these objects, but it is still better to ensure that they are not there in the first place. Most support around 300 pounds, but there are several heavy duty units available that can support much more. A heavy duty stair lift will have a reinforced seat and is also often wider.

The actual installation process of a straight stair lift can usually be done in a few hours. It requires only household tools and most people, after reading the installation manual, feel comfortable doing it themselves. It is important that all the steps be followed though, so if you do not feel comfortable doing it yourself, please arrange for professional installation. Your stair lift dealer should be able to provide a professional installation team to assist you.

While most people choose to install their stair lift on the indoors, there are several outdoor models that are available. An outdoor stair lift will be specially treated to withstand the elements and can be installed on wood, concrete, or brick stairs easily. If you are going to install an outdoor stair lift, it is important to consider any branches or trees that might interfere with the movement of the device. It might be a good idea to trim the branches if they look as they could potentially fall on the outdoor stair lift.

Stair lifts are great devices that can help make certain that the stairs can be used safely and easily without any outside help.

David Litel is an experienced writer for A1 Medical Supplies. To find out more about stair lifts, heavy duty stair lifts, and many other home medical lifting aids visit A1 Medical. They are also the number one source for used stair lifts.

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