If you're finding that it's getting increasingly difficult to get up from or sit down in your favorite seat, a lift chair can help you stay safer and more comfortable while assisting you with sitting and standing. Because these chairs are part furniture and part medical equipment, you may be wondering if Medicare can help cover some or all of the costs. Learn more about lift chairs and whether Medicare may pay some of the expenses to decide if one of these medical devices is right for your needs.
What Is a Lift Chair?
First, it's important to understand what a lift chair is and what it does. The term may make you think of a stair lift that transfers you between floors of a house, or a patient lift, which aids other people in transferring you to a bed or wheelchair. However, those devices are different. A lift chair looks like a regular chair or comfortable recliner, but it has a motorized element on a metal frame that lifts the chair into an upright position and tilts forward slightly. The motor and frame also tilt back and lower the chair to a typical seated position. You use a small remote with buttons to operate the chair's different functions.
If you have difficulty pushing yourself up from a chair, a lift chair does the work for you, elevating you to almost a standing position. It can also carefully lower you into a seated position. Some chairs recline to a completely flat position so you can comfortably sleep. People who have arthritis or other conditions that limit mobility often find that lift chairs make it easier to stand or sit without assistance from someone else.
You might see lift chairs called "power lift recliners" or "multi-position recliners," but these names all refer to the same type of chair. Where lift chairs differ, however, is in the options they're available with and the number of positions they can accommodate. Whatever your body proportions may be, you can find a comfortable lift chair. They come in varying widths and heights, and you can find them upholstered in materials like fabric, vinyl and leather. Some of these chairs also come with comfort options like heated areas and massage capabilities. You can also find customizable chairs, but keep in mind that you may have to pay more out of pocket to get the features you want than you would if you opted for a more basic model.