Hydrotherapy is a highly beneficial therapy for all humans, but it’s particularly helpful for the elderly and those who are recovering from an injury or condition. Transferring patients with limited strength and mobility can be a dangerous task, but it’s even more dangerous and difficult when that transfer takes place in a pool. Additionally, if you are unable to negotiate stairs or ladders but still wish to enjoy your own pool at home, you will need an alternative method of entering the pool.
Pool lifts are absolutely essential for safe patient transfers into and out of the pool. Pool lifts are designed to safely and fully support the patient during the transfer, lifting them clear of the pool’s edge and placing them directly into the water. Using a pool lift reduces the physical requirements of the caregiver and can make for a smoother, more comfortable transfer for everyone involved.
You will find that pool lifts are available in both powered and manual forms. Manual pool lifts use a sling for the transfer, reducing the weight and bulk of the lift. When using a manual pool lift, the caregiver operates a hydraulic control to raise and lower the lift into and out of the pool.
Powered pool lifts, on the other hand, feature a chair design which allows the patient to sit and buckle themselves into the chair. Powered lifts generally include a water-resistant hand-held control, and some patients may be able to operate the lift on their own. While powered lifts generally cost more than manual pool lifts, the investment may be worthwhile, especially if you are looking for a lift to restore your independence when it comes to swimming.
Because pool lifts are exposed to the elements, they are often built with stainless steel and are powder coated for increased protection against rust. Seats are made of durable plastics, and the lifts themselves are built to be durable and long-lasting.
Check the Lift’s Orientation
Some lifts are designed with a mount that positions the seat to either the right or the left of the pool. In some cases you can change that orientation, but it’s important to make sure that the lift’s orientation will work with your particular needs, especially if you’re buying a pool lift for home use.
Consider Installation and Removal
When buying a pool lift, find out about installation specifics to make sure that the lift is a practical option for your pool. It’s also important to consider whether you will want to remove the lift during the off-season. Some pool lifts feature an anchor system; once the anchor is installed, the lift can easily be removed from the anchor for storage when not in use.