As we age, it’s only natural that our bodies start changing, just as they have done throughout our lives. However, having spent years or maybe even decades moulding our homes to fit our needs, it can be heart-breaking to find that we’re suddenly out of place in them and, worse, that staying in our own home could even become dangerous.
When stairs become a problem, many elders aren’t sure which way to turn for the best solution, so we’ve put together some options to consider if you’re not quite sure that a stairlift is precisely what you need.
Alternatives to a stairlift
- Moving home
When stairs become a problem, the first solution that occurs to many people is to simply get rid of the issue altogether by moving to an entirely new property. If there are other factors at play like you want to move closer to relatives, want more or less space, need assisted care around the clock or simply want a change, this might be the perfect option. However, if the only motivator you have for moving is your stairs, you may be opting for a lot of stress, hassle and headaches when there could be a simpler solution.
After all, apart from your stairs, aren’t you happy with the rest of your home? Can you get about to do everything you need as long as you’re avoiding the stairs? And wouldn’t it be a shame to leave behind the community you’ve built around yourself?
- Modifying your home so that it’s all on one level
The next option that often seems viable and hassle-free (especially when compared to moving home) is modifying your home so that everything’s downstairs and you can forget the stairs are there. This option will depend on each individual home and what’s downstairs already, but this may mean building a new bedroom or bathroom, getting plumbing re-done or even losing your living area because you’ve converted it into a bedroom. Though it may seem like a quick fix, it’s worth thinking carefully about whether you want to lose half of your home and how that’s going to affect your daily life sd you consider your options.
- A homelift
Now, if you’ve decided ageing in place in your own home, surrounded by the life and home you’ve put so much time and energy into building for yourself, is the step you want to take, and that losing half of your home isn’t an option, a homelift may be the best choice for you.
Contrary to what many people believe, homelifts don’t need shafts, pits or lots of noisy machinery and can fit into most homes. All you really need is a hole through the floor. However, though they may not be as complicated as people imagine to fit, there is a considerable investment involved with a homelift and installation can take as much as a few months, requiring quite a bit of work.
Just as with any big decision, it’s worth exploring your options before you settle on the solution that’s right for you. When weighing up the options before them at this point, many people decide that a stairlift is the most hassle-free, inexpensive way to stay in their home safely for years to come. So, how do you know which stairlift is the right option to meet your needs?
Choosing the right stairlift for you
When it comes to deciding whether a stairlift is what you need, there are a few key questions you’ll need to ask:
About your needs:
- Can you comfortably get in and out of a chair by yourself?
- Can you operate a switch or button with at least one hand?
About your home:
- Is there a space at the top and bottom of your stairs where the chair could stop, and you could get out comfortably?
- Are there a couple of inches on one side of your stairs you could do without?
If you answered yes to all four questions, it’s more than likely a stairlift will meet your needs and fit into your home, whether your stairs are straight or curved, steep or narrow, or you share your staircase with other people. However, the only way to be 100% sure if a stairlift is for you is by giving us a call on 01 4600197, so if you’re still not convinced, pick up the phone and ask us all your questions directly.