However, having these issues does not mean that you have to lose your independence.
Powered lift chairs are the perfect choice for older adults who need that extra “push” to get up from a chair safely while minimizing the risk of falling.
But, which one of the myriad choices available on the internet is the best lift chair for elderly loved ones or yourself?
In this article, I’ll define what a lift chair is, review the different types of lift chairs, discuss key factors before purchasing, list the pros and cons of using lift chairs, and provide real customer reviews.
Let’s jump in…
What is a lift chair for elderly individuals?
A lift chair is a recliner designed to assist individuals with limited mobility, particularly older adults and those with limited mobility and functional ability.
Also known as power lift recliners, lift chairs have a motorized mechanism that gently lifts the user from seated to standing and vice versa.
This feature eliminates the need for strenuous effort, making it easier for elderly people to sit down or get up without putting excessive strain on their joints and muscles.
Additionally, the reclining function is particularly useful for older adults with fluid buildup in their lower legs due to medical conditions such as heart failure, lymphedema, varicose veins, chronic venous insufficiency, etc., needing to elevate their legs.
Lift chairs for elderly individuals are designed to provide comfort, support, and safety, with features like padded cushions, adjustable positions, and sturdy frames.
When looking for the best lift chair for the elderly, it’s essential to consider factors such as weight capacity, size, material, and additional features that cater to their specific needs.
Types of Lift Chairs and Their Benefits
3 main types of lift chairs are available:
2-position lift chairs
The go-to option, this type of lift chair reclines to a 45-degree angle. This allows the older adult to lay back at a comfortable angle, but not too much.
The chair’s lifting and reclining function and footrest are controlled by one motor.
Usually, the footrest and reclining function move together with this type of chair.
In other words, you cannot recline without extending the footrest.
For context, think of a movie cinema recliner chair – as you press the button to recline the chair, the footrest also extends.
These chairs are best used when watching movies or reading.
3-position lift chairs
This type of lift chair also operates on one motor, meaning the footrest moves with the backrest, just like the 2-position chair.
The chair reclines even further to an almost level or flat position.
This type of chair allows you to “hinge” at the hip, with your feet and knees positioned higher so that you are seated in a “V” position.
This position takes the load off your lower back muscles (quadratus lumborum), a common cause of chronic lower back pain, and significantly eases discomfort in this area.
This chair is ideal for napping, especially if you cannot lie completely flat due to your lower back issues.
Infinite-position lift chairs (zero-gravity chairs)
This type of chair is the most expensive but has the most options (you get what you pay for).
Unlike the previous types, this version contains two motors.
One motor controls the backrest, while the other controls the footrest.
With this capability, you can adjust your backrest to sit in a typical seated position while having your footrest in an extended position, allowing your feet to be aligned with your hip.
You can also control both the backrest and footrest to lie completely flat.
While zero-gravity chairs can have positive health benefits, such as reducing the load on your heart, joints, and muscles and increasing blood circulation, they can also cause hip and knee contractures and muscle tightening.
Before purchasing an infinite position lift chair, consult your doctor to ensure your choice aligns with any underlying medical problems.
Key Factors to Keep in Mind While Purchasing a Lift Chair For Elderly
When purchasing a lift chair for elderly loved ones, it’s important to consider the key factors such as the size, weight capacity, and features that best suit your needs.
Here are some features you may wish to consider:
Full leather may last longer than “bonded” or “faux” leather, which may degrade quickly with little use.
Research the chair’s dimensions (some can be large!) and the physical space where it will go.
Proper placing of your chair and fitment will reduce the risk of clutter and hospitalizations due to sustaining falls.
Type of chair
Identify if you want a 2-position, 3-position, or infinite-position lift chair based on your needs and physical limitations.
Consider the fitment of the chair to your body size.
Most lift chairs can handle a weight capacity of 300 pounds (136 kg).
Sturdy chair bottom
Make sure your chair is firmly planted on the floor with non-slip material.
The last thing you want is the chair sliding out from under you as you sit down or stand up.
Cool, useful features
Some lift chairs have added features such as heating and massage modes, wireless remote controls, USB charging ports (how cool!), and cup holders.
Personally, I think they are worth getting if you plan to spend your money on a good lift chair!
Pros and Cons of Using Lift Chairs For Elderly People
There are pros and cons to using lift chairs, so it’s important to carefully consider whether they’re the right choice for your needs.
As stated in the introduction, lift chairs are helpful for seniors who want to maintain their independence.
- Lift chairs reduce the risk of fall-associated injuries and hospitalizations.
- Helps older adults feel less “burdensome” to their loved ones, as they do not need much assistance while sitting or standing.
- Increases quality of life, improves blood circulation, and reduces load on muscles and joints.
- The cost of lift chairs can be high (Medicare can cover some parts of the lift chair – more on that below).
- Lift chairs must be used wisely. Inappropriate, long-time use may lead to deconditioning of muscles and joints due to a lack of mobility and exercise (don’t love your chair too much!).
- Make sure you are a good candidate for using a lift chair. Avoid use if you have balance or muscle weakness problems.
Lift Chair Cost
The cost of lift chairs can vary depending on the brand, features, and materials used.
When looking for the best lift chair for the elderly, it’s important to consider both the price and the quality.
Lift chairs can range in price from as little as $300 to more than $2,000.
However, as with many things in life, you get what you pay for, so please research your inexpensive lift chair before purchasing it.
Insurance and Medicare coverage for lift chair for elderly
Your private insurance company may cover your lift chair if your medical provider notes it is needed due to your existing medical conditions and sends the paperwork to your insurance.
Since health insurance plans differ greatly, always check with your insurance provider first to verify your benefits before purchasing your lift chair.
Medicare covers certain parts of the lift chair only, NOT the cost of the whole chair.
Typically, Medicare may cover up to 80% of the cost of the motorized portion of the lift chair, if you qualify.
You will be responsible for the non-motorized portion of the lift chair, including any deductibles or co-pay amounts specific to your Medicare plan.
To determine if you qualify, you must:
Have your doctor verify a medical need and write a prescription for the lift chair.
Click here to view Medicare’s official Certificate of Medical Necessity for Seat Lift Mechanisms.
Your doctor must verify that you have a severe neuromuscular disease or severe arthritis of the knees or hip.
The seat lift mechanism must play a direct role, as determined by your doctor, to improve your medical condition or slow its progression.
If you are able to stand up without assistance from any chair or regular armchair in your home, you do not qualify.
Once you stand up, you must be able to walk, with or without assistance from a cane or walker.
Medicare will not pay for the covered portion of your lift chair if you are in a skilled nursing facility or hospital.
Also, if Medicare has already paid for a powered wheelchair, scooter, or manual wheelchair, it will not cover your lift chair.
You can select your lift chair, and your provider will submit the claim to Medicare on your behalf for reimbursement of the motorized lift portion of the chair.
My recommendations for power recliner lift chair for elderly individuals
I may earn a commission if you purchase products using the links below. Thank you for supporting my website!
These lift chair recliners are designed with the needs of the elderly in mind, offering excellent support and ease of use.
The Restreal lift chairs are known for their durable construction and customizable features.
The Vive Health lift chairs provide great value for money without compromising quality.
Restreal lift chairs
You should consider trying out Restreal lift chairs for the ultimate comfort and support.
These chairs are designed specifically for older adults, providing a range of features that make them the perfect choice for anyone looking for a comfortable lift chair with reclining capability.
Here are nine reasons why Restreal lift chairs are a great option:
- Highly responsive, professional, and courteous customer service
- 5-8 day free shipping and delivery
- 60-day return policy
- 3-year warranty
- All lift chairs come with massage and heating functions
- Real, breathable leather
- Heavy-duty design: high load-bearing alloy bracket, able to hold up to 300 pounds
- Cup holders and magazine pockets in all models, USB ports for charging in some models
- Easy, no tool, one-person, 15-minute assembly
Here’s a short video from the Restreal manufacturer showing the different functions of one of their lift chair models:
This video shows you how easy it is to assemble a Restreal lift chair:
Real users have many good things to say about the company, its customer service, and the quality of its products.
As of the date of this article, 93 reviewers give it a 4.51 rating out of 5 stars on judge.me.
Silas G states this about Restreal’s infinite-position lift chair:
“Very satisfied. Fast and very helpful, will recommend to everyone who needs this kind of chair. My husband has COPD and is pretty much confined to his chair. So this has been a God sent
for him, by the way he cannot go to bed so he has to sleep in his chair and he says it is more comfortable than our new mattress.”
If you want to purchase a Restreal lift chair, I highly recommend doing so from the company’s official website.
Due to the high-ticket nature of these items, you want to work directly with the official company and not with third-party distributors who may be unable to help you with mechanical issues or customer service concerns.
Click the image below to purchase your lift chair directly from the company’s official website.
Vive Health lift chairs
The Vive Health power recline lift chair for elderly individuals is another great option for those looking for an inexpensive lift chair.
Vive Health has been selling high-quality health and medical products since 2014, with headquarters in two locations in the United States.
Online reviews of the company are highly positive.
As of the date of this writing, the company has a 4.84 rating out of 5 stars, based on 7,712 reviews!
On BBB, the company has a 4.11 rating out of 5 stars.
I am also impressed with the company’s professional, transparent, and ethical responses to customers’ disputes.
Here are nine reasons why Vive Health lift chairs for seniors are a great, affordable option:
- Live customer service support daily from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.!
- Highly responsive, professional, and courteous customer service (based on online reviews)
- Free shipping for orders over $39
- 30-day return policy if returned in original packaging and condition (read policy carefully)
- VERY inexpensive compared to competitors!
- Sturdy construction – supports up to 300 pounds
- 1-year warranty
- Lift chairs come with massage function
- Easy, no tool, one-person assembly
First-time orders qualify for a 10% discount!
Additionally, you can save up to 15% when you bundle products.
The company offers two types of lift chairs, a regular-size, and a large-size option.
Click the images below to learn more and buy on the company’s official website:
See the table below for a comparison of features between Restreal and Vive Health lift chairs:
Feature Comparison Between Restreal and Vive Health Lift Chairs
|Cool features||Massage and Heat Modes||Only Massage, no Heat|
|Warranty||3 years||1 year|
|Return policy||60 days||30 days|
|Customer support||Email, live chat||live phone support 7 days a week, email|
The aging process can lead to decreased mobility and quality of life and increased risk of falls and injuries.
Lift chairs can greatly help older adults struggling with frailty and mobility issues.
Choosing the best lift chair recliner for elderly loved ones can seem daunting.
However, high-quality, dependable, inexpensive options are available for those looking to save money.
Overall, investing in a lift chair can greatly improve the quality of life for elderly individuals, providing them with the necessary support and assistance.