Old Age & Reduced Mobility – At What Point Should You Consider Getting A Stairlift?Ian Gibson
Ageing is an inevitable process which we will all go through in our lives. As we grow older our bodies will start to show signs of the life we have led and flexibility, speed, strength and manoeuvrability will tend to decrease over time. This is not as ominous as it may sound as you can still enjoy the things that you like doing in your life but living with reduced mobility just means that you need to take steps to be more comfortable. Climbing stairs is often a sizable challenge when reduced mobility becomes apparent as this task can be the source of a lot of physical discomforts while also increasing the risk of a fatal fall. Stairlifts exist for exactly that reason and every year Affordable Mobility helps hundreds of customers ease the impacts of reduced mobility by installing sleek and reliable Stannah made stairlifts.
Stairlift costs are totally dependent on the type and length of your home’s staircase but as with many big home additions you may be wondering “do I need a stairlift?” or “how severe does my mobility need to be in order to get a stairlift installed?”. There is no hard and fast rule to determine someone as a prime beneficiary for a stairlift but at the core, it’s your comfort and safety that are the deciding factors.
Seriously committing to having a stairlift installed in your home can seem like a big decision and it is natural in some cases for individuals to be reluctant in admitting the extent of their physical limitations. If you are experiencing any of the following points, we recommend making an appointment with a stairlift specialist immediately.
Climbing The Stairs Is Taking A Long Time
Walking up the stairs is a fairly simple physical process and is usually done in a single consistent rhythm. That said, walking up a flight of stairs should take no longer than a few seconds so if you are finding that you are taking longer and climbing each step in multiple stop-start movements then this could be a sign that you may be having difficulty and require assistance.
The act of walking up a flight of stairs engages a whole range of lower body muscles including hip flexors, glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings and the soleus to name a few. When we climb a flight of stairs this network of muscles contracts in order to spring us forward and up onto the next step.
Sarcopenia is a medical term to describe the loss of muscle tissue in adults as they age after 30 with the prime affected age group being 60-75. It is said that during this time that those within this age range can experience around 5% muscular reduction every decade from middle age causing weakness, lack of stamina and an inevitable reduction in physical activity. This further accelerates the rate at which muscle tissue is lost to the point where it becomes increasingly difficult to summon posterior chain power needed to climb a set of stairs.
You Are Experiencing Pain In Your Joints
Tendons, ligaments and cartilage are flexible and springy bits of tissue that help attach muscle to bone and help promote connectivity throughout our bodies. In our younger years, these types of tissue are remarkably hard-wearing and reactive when we participate in physical activity. As we get older our tendons and ligaments become less springy and shorten which leads to stiff achy joints.
In addition, joint cartilage and connective tissue that helps support your bones naturally start to wear away thus giving way to conditions like arthritis, tendonitis and chronic pain. If you think about the act of climbing a set of stairs you are essentially top-loading your knees, hips and ankles with your entire body weight. If those joints do not have the flexibility or support then huge aching and pain is sure to occur.
Ultimately climbing a set of stairs should not be a painful experience. If you have started to feel pain in your joints during or after climbing stairs then this is a sign that it may be time to consider a stairlift. Life is too short to live with chronic joint pain brought on by over-exertion and the stairlift installation process is hassle-free and easy.
You Feel Out Of Breath & Drained After Climbing Stairs
We all experience an ever so slight rise in heart rate when climbing up a set of stairs which is natural since our heart has to work harder to pump blood into the muscles that are powering us forward. If you feel significantly drained, out of breath and dizzy after climbing a set of stairs then this is a sign of over-exertion and that your body is struggling with the output required to complete the task.
Anyone experiencing this level of fatigue should without question seriously considering a stairlift immediately because on many occasions lightheadedness and fatigue can result in serious falls, broken bones and hospitalisation. Over time, our circulatory and cardiovascular systems tend to become less efficient at operating resulting in lower aerobic capacity. Cardiovascular
You Have Problems With Balance
Problems with balance are a serious concern and if you have started to feel less able on your feet then the stairs can prove to be a hazard. The loss of balance is well documented in ages 60+ and is one of the most popular reasons why individuals decide to invest in a stairlift for their home. As with the loss of stamina and shortness of breath, balance difficulties can also result in a serious fall which places even more importance on stairlifts as a preventative measure to further injury. Problems with balance in old age are down to the fact that cognition, site and reaction times also decrease as time gets on.
When you couple this with the muscular physiological degradation as previously mentioned, the risk of having a fall due to bad balance becomes very much heightened. Research has shown that about one in three adults over 60 have had a fall over the last year which makes stairlifts a very attractive prospect. Furthermore, over time the human body can’t recover and repair as effectively as it once could and a fall due to bad balance could result in lengthy hospital stays and even the use of a wheelchair. If you’ve noticed a change in your ability to balance and remain stable then don’t risk having a fall, stairlifts are a sensible option that will protect you and give you full peace of mind whilst being able to enjoy your home.
Stairlifts Made Easy
With Affordable Mobility getting a stairlift installed anywhere across the North of England is a simple straightforward process! It all starts with getting in contact with our team who will discuss your requirements and specifics surrounding your home’s staircase. Within no more than 24 hours an assessor will visit your home where we will take measurements and structural information on your staircase, we will then provide you with a competitive stairlift quotation.
Call us today on 0800 524 4191 for a free no obligation home survey.