Before you buy a bath lift, consider the points listed below:
- Bath lifts fit into a standard bath to raise the user in and out of the bath.
- Most bath lifts are battery powered.
- Different models are available; upright, reclining, and inflatable or canvas strap design, some are suitable for corner baths.
- Accessories include padded or swivelling seat, lateral supports and straps, pommels and head supports.
- To use a bath lift you need to sit on the seat when it is raised to bath edge height, then swing your legs over the bath side and into the bath and slide your bottom into the centre of the seat. Then you operate a handset with press buttons to lower and then raise yourself into/out of the bath water.
- Always try before you buy.
- Check that you would be able get on and off safely and lift your legs over the bath side safely; it is a similar movement to getting into bed.
- Check that you have adequate sitting balance; upright and reclining bath lifts have a rigid seat with back support. Inflatable and canvas strap bath lifts offer less support.
- Consider if you require a quick wash or want to lie back for a soak in the bath. An upright bath lift might suit for a quick wash, a reclining or inflatable would be better for a long soak.
- Check how often and how you need to charge the battery and check that you will be able to manage this yourself.
- If you need to remove the bath lift from the bath between uses, check that you can manage the weight and method of removal.
- Consider the shape of your own bath. If it is an unusual shape or extra short or narrow or low, or has grab handles or a textured surface this may affect safe fitting or movement of the bath lift.
- Many bath lifts attach to the bath surface with suckers. The bath surface must be smooth, dry, dust and oil free for a secure fitting. Secure the bath lift suckers before filling the bath with water. If you use bath oils or ointments, ensure suckers are fitted securely to a dry and oil free bath surface before water and oils are added.
Prices range from:
£350 for a reclining bath lift
£350-700 for an inflatable bath lift
£2000 for canvas strap lift
For impartial advice from an Occupational Therapist and information about equipment for independence, suppliers and prices contact: The Independent Living Centre 01392 380181
Call us to arrange to try out this equipment