For individuals or the families of individuals with limited mobility, in-home lifts, whether electric or manual, can aid caregivers in relocating these individuals. Lifts, from full-body floor-based lifts to overhead lifts, can help prevent back injury to those who are providing care to these individuals, and can help increase the ability of these individuals to move from one location to another smoothly and safely. Weather in the case of individuals with physical ailments, such as back issues, or for patients where upward movement can cause unnecessary strain on the body, sit-to-stand lifts can offer a way for them to transfer between sitting positions and standing positions without added stress. Floor based full body lifts, which include a wide range of sling options for the comfort of their passengers, are useful for individuals with little to no movement capabilities, where transporting them from one location to another could cause safety issues for the care provider. Most forms of lifts are available in either pneumatic or electric forms, and come with interchangeable sling options for individuals of varying ages and sizes. If you are in the market for a sling,or a full lift for your home or medical office, doing the proper research is key to ensure that you are investing in the right equipment to help your unique needs.
Floor-Based Full-Body Lifts
Floor-based full-body lifts are useful for individuals with more severe mobility issues, such as individuals who are unable to control their motor functions, or patients in full body casts. These lifts come with interchangeable sling options to allow their use with a wide range of patients. Floor-based full-body lifts are useful to both home and professional areas of care, as they can assist in transporting an individual from one area of the house to the other, or one location of treatment to another, without adding unnecessary strain to the caregivers or the patient themselves. Floor-based full-body lifts come in both pneumatic and electric styles. While electric lifts do operate much quicker than pneumatic lifts, they do require charging and can run out of power at an inopportune moment. With a pneumatic lift, the lifting motion is not as smooth as it is for the electric version, but they do not require any form of charging or battery to operate, and as such are a bit lighter to transport.
Sit-to-stand lifts come in a wide range of forms, from the more clinical, medical-based versions which allows an individual to be scooped up and raised from their sitting position, to assisted lift recliners, which allow the individual to be raised from their seat in a localized area, like a living room, without adding the additional knee and back strain needed to push themselves up from the position. While each of these forms of sit-to-stand lifts fulfill the same function, the more clinical baselift does hold a wider range of options, as it allows the individuals to be moved and removed from various levels of seating without having to rely on each area of seating to operate as a lift in their own right. However, for home use, the recliner lift helps restore mobility to individuals who have minor to severe difficulty standing up after sitting down, and can allow a level of freedom to an individual who requires the assistance of a lift. Both forms of lifts come in a variety of sizes, with the recliner lift allowing for more customization to fit a living room decor. The more clinical version of the sit-to-stand lifts does allow for a wider range of practical customizable settings to help a wider range of patients, and as such is optimal for locations with more than one individual with mobility concerns, such as is the case in a hospital or treatment center setting.
Ceiling-mounted lifts are unique when it comes to lift designs, as they can allow for a larger range of mobility for an individual, without them having to worry about moving the lift to the area directly. Ceiling-mounted lifts are similar to floor-based full-body lifts, as they use a sling system to lift an individual from either a sitting or lying position, and raise them up for transport to another location. However, ceiling-mounted lifts operate on a track that is installed in a location, and as such is more ideal for a medical situation, or a home situation where the individual is under constant monitoring by their caregiver. Track lifts are useful for carrying the individual with mobility concerns to areas, such as a bedroom or a recreational area, without having to worry about keeping a bulky lift nearby. Most ceiling-mounted lifts are powered by electricity, and as such there is a mild concern about being able to use them in the case of a power outage or an area with limited electrical current. Some are kinetic-based, but can pose a risk of injury to the caregiver due to the strain of moving the lift along.
Here is a YouTube video demonstrating how to transfer a patient from bed to wheelchair using a ceiling lift:
With the wide range and types of lifts available to help individuals with limited mobility, doing your research on the ideal lift for your unique situation is key to making sure you get the best out of the equipment. Lifts in general come in a wide range of price points and styles, as well as different forms of functionality to best assist in the care of an individual who has difficulty moving from one location to another. With the help of the right kind of lift, you or your loved one can regain some of their autonomy, and can be safely moved from one location to another without risk of injuring themselves or their caregiver.