There’s a reason a lot of us find this time of year so stressful. The holidays can be anything but a holiday when you’re hosting guests.
And when one of those guests has a disability, your job goes beyond basic cooking and cleaning to making sure your home is as accessible as it is hospitable.
That’s why many people rent stair lifts around this time of year: it gives their guests who might have mobility challenges a way to access every part of the home.
But that’s not the only thing you can do to help visitors who might have disabilities. Here’s a list of some of the ways you can make your home more accessible and welcoming this year.
For guests with mobility issues
As we said earlier, you might want to rent a stair lift for the holidays. This will help both wheelchair users and older visitors who might have trouble on the steps.
You can also rent a temporary wheelchair ramp if your home has a lot of steps.
Invest in a shower seat and removable showerhead for guests that will be staying overnight.
Remove things that might become low-level obstacles, such as throw rugs or power cords.
Most wheelchairs are between 24 and 27 inches wide. Give wheelchair users enough space to go from room to room. This may mean – temporarily – removing smaller pieces of furniture.
For guests with Alzheimer’s or dementia
Speak with their caregivers ahead of time to learn your guest’s emotional triggers or stressors.
Put up a sign to guide people to the bathroom.
Set aside a quiet space where guests can nap if they feel restless.
Lock doors and block stairways.
Your guests may remember you, but they may not always remember recent milestones. You may have to talk about things like a wedding or the birth of a grandchild as if they’re learning about it for the first time.
Above all, remain positive and try to answer their questions in a way that doesn’t make them feel bad about forgetting things.
For guests who are deaf or have trouble hearing
Make eye contact when you talk with them, even if you’re speaking to someone acting as an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter. If there’s no interpreter on hand, have a note pad handy – or just write things using the notes app on your phone.
Better still, learn a few phrases in ASL, like “It’s good to see you” or “It’s time for dinner.”
Communicate normally. There’s no need to shout or make overexaggerated movements with your mouth while speaking.
For guests with visual impairments
Allow them to take your elbow for guidance when showing them around. Keep an eye out for steps and inclines.
Show them to their seats at meals and let them know where things are on the table using clock directions. (“The cranberry sauce is at your two o’clock.”)
There’s no need to speak to people with visual impairment in a louder voice.
Introduce yourself with a hug or handshake, saying your name in the process. If there’s someone else with you, let the guest know where they are in relation to you. (“My son Jim is standing to my right.”)
If you need to move to another room during a conversation, be sure to let the guest know. (“I’m just stepping into the kitchen for a second.”)
Your holiday guests deserve to feel at home in your house, no matter their circumstances. At Pennsylvania Stairlifts, we’ve dedicated ourselves to making that happen.
Whether you need a permanent stair lift installation or just want to rent a stair lift for the holidays, we’re ready to help. Contact us today to learn more about our stair lift rentals. We look forward to helping your guests feel at home.
The stair lift you choose should be available to accommodate different types of staircases: straight or curved. Ideally, you should choose a stair lift with a modular design, which means installation will be simple, with no changes to your home.
There’s a lot of work that goes into getting your home ready for holiday guests: cooking, cleaning, adding fresh sheets to the guest room.
But when one of your guests has a disability, your job is to make your home not just hospitable, but accessible. If this is new territory for you, don’t worry. We’ve put together a few tips to help guests who have disabilities feel more at home.
When we think of someone using a chair lift, it’s tempting to picture a person who has permanently lost their ability to make it up and down the steps.
But sometimes the need for a chair lift is just temporary. If you’ve just gotten out of the hospital, or are returning home after spending time in a rehabilitation center, it’s important to have support in place. Physical and occupational therapists know the value of renting a chair lift for your home while you’re in the midst of your recovery.
We’re sure you’ve seen a stair lift at some point, even if it was on TV or a movie. But if you’re looking to buy or rent a stair lift, you’ll have one important question: How do they work? In this blog post, we’ll look at the basics of a stair lift: what they’re made of, how they work, and how they can help.
Parts & pieces of your stair lift
The central part of the stair lift is known as the carriage, which is comprised of the seat, footplate, armrests and seatbelt, along with the motor and battery that power the lift.
Most stair lifts can be moved horizontally at the top or bottom of the stairs to allow people to get on and off. Some stair lifts don’t feature a seat and are designed to hold a wheelchair, or to let people use them while standing.
It might be something your doctor or physical therapist recommends after therapy. It may only be for a short recuperation period, but it will make your home safer and more accessible. Whether you need to buy or rent stair lifts, we offer a variety of models to suit your needs.
Or you may find that you or a loved one needs additional assistance going from the one level of your house to another. A stair lift can get you there safely, without risk of trips or falls.
PA Stair Lifts is a proud distributor of MediTek Stairlifts. They offer both multi-flight and external stair lifts as well as a range of accessories. Read on to learn more about some of the unique features of these accessibility products. It will tell you what to look for in a stair lift.
Continuous Battery Charging
The batteries constantly recharge and remain ready for use. Constant charging also preserves battery life, so your stair lift’s batteries maintain their charge longer.
If you were to stop 10 random people on the street and ask them to describe the physical attributes of the sort of person who might have a home stair lift installed in their home, how do you think they would respond?
We can’t say for sure, but we can probably agree on this: The words “old,” or “elderly,” or “senior” would probably feature in almost every description. And that likely wouldn’t come as a surprise. Because for reasons that are mostly obvious, the average stair lift or “stair chair” owner is also a senior citizen.
The Elderly Aren’t the Only Population Who Can Benefit from Stair Lifts
But common sense tells us that elderly people suffering from arthritis or other mobility issues aren’t the only demographic that can benefit from a device that transports you up and down a set of stairs.
For most of us, the question of whether or not a building or a home has stairs is something we rarely think about.
But for people who don’t have the full use of their legs, not having access can mean the end of a night out. It can mean they can’t shop in a certain store, or visit a friend’s home.
Older or disabled people can face this kind of hardship on a regular basis in public. There’s no reason they should have to face it at home.
That’s where owning a handicap chairlift—like the ones provided by PA Stairlifts—comes in. It’s a piece of equipment that can change your life in any number of ways. Depending on your situation or that of your loved ones, it can also keep you from having to change your life.