Lift chairs look like standard recliners, but they lift and lower to help people sit and rise without strain. There are a number of conditions that making sitting down or standing up painful, difficult or impossible. Lift recliners ease the pain of movement, slow the movement to prevent dizziness, and often make the movement possible when it would otherwise be impossible without help.
Conditions from arthritis to neurological disorders can make it a chore to perform the movements that most of us take for granted every day. There are different types of lift chairs that are best for different disorders or physical problems. Choosing the right one for your needs will make the biggest difference in your comfort and mobility.
Lift Chair Positioning
A liftchair can do much more than just lower and lift you slowly. Choosing one with the proper positioning options will affect how much you enjoy using the chair, because it will offer the most support and comfort, and may even help with certain health issues.
Lift recliners that have what’s known as zero gravity positioning or infinite positioning allow you to raise the footrest and lower the head of the chair independently of each other, so you can achieve almost any position you want. Zero gravity-capable chairs are ideal for people who want to elevate their feet above the level of their heart. This is a position that’s recommended for people with low blood pressure and diabetes to help them avoid edema, or swelling, in the lower legs, ankles and feet. Many other conditions like poor circulation and heart problems can also cause this swelling, which can be relieved by elevating the legs to stimulate blood flow.
These liftchairs also allow a reclined position that’s suitable for sleeping, and let you move the chair how you need to for comfort. These options are ideal for people who will spend a lot of time in their chairs and who need or want the variety of positions, especially the ability to elevate the feet.
Lift chairs that offer either 2 or 3 positions are designed more like standard recliners. In a 2-position chair you can sit upright or move into the second position, where the footrest is up and the back is slightly reclined. A 3-position chair gives you those options plus a slightly more reclined position. These lift chairs are good for people who need the lifting mechanism and want the typical features offered by a standard recliner.
Lift Chair Size
Larger people are more comfortable in bigger chairs. But size matters more with lift chairs because a motor operates the lift, and each motor has a weight limit that it can safely and adequately handle. People who weigh 375 pounds or more will need a chair designed to hold the weight. Heavy-duty lift chairs have dual motors with some able to easily handle 600 pounds or more.
Weight isn’t the only consideration, though. Height and general size matters, too. You can purchase petite lift chairs for people who are up to 5′ 2″ in height, as well as chairs for those over 6′ tall. These sizes matter to make it safer for the person when the chair lifts. Getting the right chair means it won’t lift too high for a petite person, and that it’ll lift far enough for someone tall with much longer legs.