Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Climbing the Stairs in a Stair Lift

It is often difficult, if not impossible, for those who afflicted by arthritis to use the stairs. There are many other health related issues that can make it difficult to climb the stairs, but among those over the age of sixty-five, arthritis is one of the leading prohibitory diseases that can affect stair use.

The reason that the sixty-five and older group is so important, is due to the fact that falling down the stairs is all too common and is the leading reason for hospitalization and unintentional death. To help prevent this risk, it is a good idea to install a stair lift.

Using a stair lift has been shown to significantly reduce the risk of injury or death as a result of a fall while on the stairs. Most people are able to operate a stairway lift independently and without relying on outside assistance. They are designed to safely move a person up and down the stairway, without subjecting them to the risk of falling.

A stair lift usually consists of a metal track, which is most frequently secured directly to the stairs, and some sort of car unit, which travels along the track. For safety reasons, a chair is usually used to transport the occupant, but a few models are available that use a small platform instead of a chair. The units that use a chair are called stair chairs and the kinds that use a platform are called perch lifts.

Stairway lifts that use a perch are a little riskier and can be dangerous. This is because the rider will have to remain in an upright standing position as the car moves up or down the track. They do serve a purpose though, because some people can not safely bend their knees enough to allow them to safely sit in a stair chair.

Overall, you will want to avoid perch lifts unless they are absolutely necessary. The stair chair is much safer and as an added safety feature many come with seat belts and optional chest restraints. As an added safety feature, the chair on most stair chairs is able to swivel. This ensures that when you enter or exit the lift you are not forced to touch the stairs at all.

These types of lifting aids are most often seen on the inside of a home, but they are also available for outdoor use. If you intend to use the device outdoors, it will be necessary to make certain that the lift is an outdoor lift. You can not just place any stair chair outdoors, because it is necessary for it to be one that is rated to be completely weather resistant. Outdoor stair chairs cost a little extra, but are completely sealed against moisture and covered with paint and materials that are resistant to rust.

Even though outdoor lifts are built to be weather resistant, you will want to take measures to protect it from the environment. If it is installed under an overhang, ensure that there are gutters installed to deflect rain away from the lift. This is important so that you do not slip when entering or exiting the lift. It is also advised to trim any branches that might hang over the lift.

People who use a stair lift are able to confidently climb the stairs without fear of falling. They allow independent stair usage and can easily be operated with either hand.

Sean Noughtly, a writer, is familiar with many types quality home lifting aids, like the ones you can find at AmeriGlide. To learn about stair lifts or other lifting aids visit AmeriGlide.

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