What to Look for When Shopping for Ideal Chairs for Seniors

Sitting adds too much pressure on your spine. You have probably heard of individuals who have suffered spine related issues due to bad sitting posture. Yes, that’s right. If you do not get the best posture, it does not matter if you have been sitting on a very expensive chair or not; you are prone to suffering from backaches and other conditions.

The elderly, especially, need to have well-designed chairs as they are likely to spend most of their time sitting in the house as their mobility reduces with age. Comfort is therefore crucial in this case. You might notice that they may start complaining about aches and pain when on the chair and they even want to spend more time on the bed to avoid the discomfort. The best way to solve such issues is by taking your time and getting them a suitable chair that will suit their needs.

Which is the ideal chair for older adults? The answer to this question may vary from one person to the other based on every individual’s needs. There is a variety of options on the market, and sometimes it can be hard to choose the best. It is vital to be informed to ensure that you are making a sound decision. Let’s look at some of the main features to look for when shopping for elders.

Comfort, comfort!

Comfort is the number one feature to go for, be it for the elderly or the young. What’s the purpose of sitting if you cannot feel comfortable in that position? In this position, you should be feeling relaxed and less tired. You do not want a chair that strains your body, and you end up feeling like you have been working so hard while you were just seated. Chairs, in this case, are meant to reduce the amount of time the seniors spend in bed and improve their quality life, and you should, therefore, go for something that does exactly that.

Provision of head support

For seniors who have poor head control, you need to get additional head support to ensure that they do not strain too much trying to stay straight. Also, make sure that the support is soft and comfortable by maybe going for ones structured like pillows. The goal is to offer support to the head, neck and the spine. Head control affects other aspects such as breathing and eating. Having the head support feature on the seat saves you the hassle of trying to support them with your hands every time you want to feed them, and it is crucial for their health.

Feet rest

The feet are as important as the rest of the body. Approximately 19% of your body weight is exerted on the feet. As mentioned earlier, the elders have a declined mobility which means that their feet will experience little movement time, no stretching or exercises. It is therefore vital to check a chair with a place where they can load their feet for stability and pressure redistribution in their body. This ensures that even if they are not moving, their legs will remain in good condition.

Does the chair have wheels?

This is not mandatory, but it is necessary for easier movement around the home or care facility. It will make work easier for the caregiver to move the senior from one point to the next. Also, the elderly can conveniently move by themselves if there is no one around.

Pressure management

If the seniors are sitting for long hours and they cannot shift their weight whenever they feel like a position is getting uncomfortable, they will end up with body pain and especially the back. This can be avoided by getting a seat that is offering pressure management. It not only increases comfort but also reduces the chances of getting body sores.

Consider the chair’s height

Some people believe that they need a low chair to feel comfortable. However, that is not the case. The height of the chair might also depend on the person’s height. You do not want them to feel like they have to bed their body to place their feet on the floor comfortably. Also, do not go for too high as this will put too much pressure on their things and back.

Width and depth

A good seat should be able to the user’s breadth and the depth comfortably. Also, the seat should be able to take as much weight as the user may put on it.

Do not forget the material

The material is one of the major determinants of a chair’s comfort. A chair that is showing too much wood isdefinitely not the best choice to go for. It should have enough padding or a fabric cloth for comfort when sitting for long hours.

Posture is everything. The hands should be free to interact, consider the head’s balance over the body and ensure that the spine and pelvis are straight. These three should be able to guide you and help you get the right chair for your loved one for an improved lifestyle and enhanced health. All the best!

Here Is How to Care for a Caregiver

According to the National Alliance for Caregiving, 44 million people in the US, or 20 percent of the population, provide unpaid-for care to another.

So chances are high you know of someone in the caregiving role. Or it could be that you are providing that care to an elderly or disabled family member or loved one.

IncrediCare, a home health agency, says of caregiving, “It’s a selfless act, it’s a wonderful thing, but the rest of your life gets put on hold. If you have a spouse and children, it can get especially taxing—you’re not at home as much as you should be, your children need help with schoolwork, your spouse is feeling neglected. There’s a lot going on. You need to lean back and just breathe and know that you’re breathing for you.”

Here are ways that experts suggest caregivers take care of themselves in order to stay strong and carry on.

Do not try to do it all alone.

Have you unexpectedly found yourself in the caregiving role? Take it as a compliment of sorts. It could be because you are the one closest to the individual who is deemed responsible enough to provide the needed aid. However, responsible individuals often find it hard to ask for help, believing that they should be able to handle it themselves.

The truth is that your sick loved one is not the only person whose health should concern you. One survey showed that the toll on a caregiver’s health increases over time and with hours spent in the caregiving role. Those with fewer hours spent caregiving reported that their health was excellent or very good. Whereas those providing a higher number of hours in caregiving were more likely to report that their health was only fair or even poor.

If your health continues to decline, you will not be able to care for your loved one. So taking care of your own health should be a priority. To do this, you will need to learn how to ask for help.

Have a family meeting or contact others close to your loved one. Be honest and specific concerning what you need help with. Often, individuals not familiar with what duties must be seen to are unaware of ways they can lighten your load. Prepare a list of tasks that others can help you with before you call your meeting so that you do not forget. Such meetings can get emotional, so prepare beforehand.

Be realistic about the emotional support you provide.

Dealing with a loved one who is battling with a long-term illness can be emotionally draining. Caregivers can often feel the need to provide for the sick person’s flagging emotions and spirits as well as attend to their physical needs. In your desire to help, be cautious of placing the weight of their happiness on your own shoulders.

The emotional health and happiness of another person is always the responsibility of the individual. Understand that your sick loved one will likely have bad days when he or she can’t help but express discontent. Realize that their happiness is tied to themselves and should not be dependent on you. Just as your emotions and happiness are your own responsibility.

Be aware of your personal signs of stress. 

Do you find it difficult to fall asleep at night? Have you lost your appetite? Or are you stress eating? Do you feel hopeless or depressed about your situation? Do you have difficulty coping with ordinary tasks? Do you no longer take joy in things you used to favor?

Watch how you behave in these areas, as stress often shows itself through poor sleep hygiene, depression, and loss of appetite. And can further go on to affect your health.

Even after you have asked for and received help, you may find yourself suffering from stress. Learn to watch yourself for signs that you are having difficulty coping.

Prepare coping mechanisms to keep stress in check and to avoid letting negative emotions build. This might look like a daily walk in the park. Or meeting a friend out for coffee or drinks every couple of days or as often as needed to keep yourself on an even emotional keel.

The way that you find peace and a method to release stress will be different for everyone. The key lies in knowing what you need to do to cultivate inner peace and schedule that activity into your daily life.