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She has a lift chair but is afraid to use the lift part for fear of her feet sliding outward and her falling onto the floor. Ideas please.

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I'm still concerned about her safety should an emergency arise. And, she will decline more too, so you may begin to look at other living arrangements. I have not been prepared for each of Dad's big declines, and often find myself catching up with the latest problems.
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Balance bars were costly but I did find the Superpole intriguing. I'm gonna search that out if I can get her to agree. So often I work at problem solving issues for her and she won't follow thru ie: for taking meds on time ...buying her an med alarm watch, set the watch, put it on her wrist and return to find she has taken it off and has gotten off her med schedule again :(
She is a challenge. I prayed to the Lord for patience and He gave me my sister! LOL
Thank you to all that gave suggestions!
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We used a Superpole in the bathroom, it is a pole that is anchored between the floor and ceiling joists so you don't need to hire a carpenter and it can be moved if necessary. The pole can be used on it's own but we purchased one with an adjustable arm (which I think might be what you need), they also have one with a trapeze bar. Try google to find a supplier, or search for bed assist rails for more ideas.
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GardenArtist, I like the balance bars idea. I can see her reaching forward and pulling herself up. I wonder where to get such a device?
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Gail; Has your sister applied for medicaid? Or is she assuming that she doesn't qualify?
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Sister is 70, disability not available., financially does not qualify for help, you have to be in extreme poverty to qualify, lower-middle class can get no assistance. She is pretty independant in the house IF she could get out of her chair!
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Is she on Disability? Would she qualify for Medicaid? It is disgraceful that in the US health care is determined by what you can afford. Healthcare for profit stinks. But as that is the way it is, she should take advantage of any financial help she may be eligible for.

And please do not feel guilty that you can't spend every day with her. You have a life, too.

I wonder if an adult day health program might be a good option for her some days. Medicaid covers that, and some programs have sliding scales or scholarsips for those not on Medicaid. It would provide interaction with other adults and a change of scenery. Plus safety for her mobility issues.
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A lot of ideas and questions...thank you. she has PD so she has times "on" and "off". Times she can get up and times she can't She wants a day care worker but can not afford services, they are soooo expensive. A stationary anchored bar sounds interesting but it would have to be off to the side so the recliner would work. After she is up, she can walk. It's very frustrating. She wants me with her every day and it's not possible.
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With my husband’s lift chair, we put a larger size bath rug, with rubber backing down and his walker in front of him. I always made sure he had shoes on and not stockinged feet. You might even want to ask someone from where you purchased it or have your doctor prescribe the services of a health Care aide twice a week to work with her to get her unafraid.
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I think that at a certain point, a lift chair is just not enough. Then it's time for live in-person help. My dad (with PD) passed the point of using his lift chair earlier this year.
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While my son was recovering from a serious accident he had a Hospital Bed Trapeze device to transfer himself out of bed, onto a sliding board, and into his wheelchair. I don't know if similar devices are available for chairs, but if Sister has enough arm strength that might be an option.

Have you contacted the local American Parkinson Disease Association chapter, and discussed this issue with them?

Once your sister is out of the chair, can she get around OK? Does she use assistive devices for walking? Does she have an alert system to report falls?

As several have mentioned, some solutions might be expensive. But she is going to have PD the rest of her life. An investment in her self-sufficiency may be well worthwhile.

If an emergency arose and she had to leave the house, would she try using the lift chair? Could she crawl to a door and pull herself up if necessary? It is kind of scary to think of her on her own all day, but it is equally dreadful to think about her giving up her independence.

Instead of sitting in this chair, what if she spent the time in a comfortable electronic wheelchair? If she could drive that into the bathroom, for example, and use installed grab bars to lift herself out, would that be a good option?

You are a thoughtful sister to be looking for solutions for her! If you come up with some that work well, come back and tell us about them -- we learn from each other!
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Here is a link for a self hoyer lift
https://www.rehabmart.com/product/independent-lifter-45361.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIhMCY9O_h1wIVhYp-Ch1eRAUsEAYYCSABEgJjtvD_BwE
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Not only can her feet slip, but if her leg strength is weak, her knees may give way. There are various types of DME called 'stand aids.' Most are for use by a caregiver, but some are not. None are inexpensive.
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Sunny's post reminded me of another possible solution - bars, similar to balance bars, on either side of the chair. Again, they'd have to be solidly anchored, and the chair would have to be narrow enough that she could comfortably reach bars on both sides.
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If it's only the height of the chair, I'd work on that. Like, can she rise up on her own, if the chair height is high? My LO had trouble and so her chairs were just up high. She had an adjustable recliner that was set high up and she never moved it. She had a booster on the toilet so it was high. Her bed was high too. So, she had no reason to be down low, HOWEVER, if she were to fall, she may not be able to get up. That happened with my LO a couple of times. When the mobility is very limited, it's just so risky to not have a person under the same roof.
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My first thought as well was what might happen during an emergency.

The only suggestion I have is a more complex one, similar to arrangements I've seen in rehab and in some hospital rooms. It's a trapeze device, anchored in the ceiling studs, and can be pulled down to hold onto, but retracts when released.

It's been quite a while since I've seen one, but I also vaguely recall using it for arm exercises. I also saw patients holding it while easing toward the edge of the bed and getting out. What I don't recall was whether or not someone needed to be present to guide the bar to the individual in bed.

It would have to be positioned low enough for her to grab when she's sitting, so that might be an issue b/c it probably wouldn't retract much higher and could be in her way when she gets up again.

And it would have to be installed by a carpenter to ensure it's properly anchored in the studs.

I suspect it would be more costly as well.

Recently I wanted to contact companies that did retrofitting for assistive devices. The Alzheimer's Assn. was kind enough to send me a list of companies. The Area Agency on Aging might have some as well.

While not necessarily providing assistance only for a lift bar, they may have other suggestions.

I've seen the poles as well (like stripper poles), anchored both in the ceiling and the floor, but there's really not as much stability in grabbing onto a pole and pulling oneself up.
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I agree. With such a struggle with getting up, what would she do in case of fire? I think her fear of standing unaided is valid. I'd take heed. It may be that she needs assistance around the clock. I'd hate to see her get a fall and injury.
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Gail--

So if you can't run over to help your sister at the drop of a hat, what happens? How does she get around during the day? I am hoping she has some kind of in home care, she shouldn't be left alone at all!

Those lift chairs are great for some people, and the idea of placing the walker in front is great--but that will not work for everyone and the fear of falling for PD patients is overwhelming....she needs to work with an OT to figure out how to work this out.

I'm really hoping she doesn't live alone....
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thank you for those replies. my sister is alone all day. I live 4 miles away. she calls me to come over and help her stand and I can't always go then. the walker in front of the chair sounds good but she needs to be "pulled up" to stand. the life chair fits her well, it is the third one she's had. she is afraid of sliding out of the chair and yes she has slid out before.
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I've got to say that mom's old home care aide had a lot of stories about falls and near falls from lift chairs, they're not always the solution for everyone.
Has she had any PT to help her stand unaided?
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Gain, my Dad had a lift chair, the best thing since sliced bread in his opinion. What Dad did was put his walker in front of the chair so he had something to grab onto while the chair was lifting. That seemed to work for him.

Lift chairs come in different sizes, so having the correct size is better. My Dad was short, so he had a shorter lift chair, which he rented... kinda like a test drive before purchasing.
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Has she tried the chair with someone else present? Has this actually happened to her?
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