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BUYERS GUIDE FOR HOSPITAL BED

What is the best hospital bed for bedridden, elderly, and disabled patients?

There are different types of hospital beds. We have the electric, manual, innerspring, foam, and air classification. There are different considerations as far as choosing a hospital bed is concerned. A good hospital bed is important for the comfort of a patient. It also makes it easier for the patient to be taken care of. However, it doesn’t mean a hospital bed has to be overly expensive.

So, what is the best hospital bed?

The truth is that the best hospital bed is the one that meets your needs. It depends on a lot of factors such as your body weight, physique, and height. Factors such as the length of time you will spend on the bed as well as your mobility also matters. The best hospital bed is the one that is best for you.

Is there a difference between an adjustable and a hospital bed?

The foot and head heights of both an adjustable bed and a hospital bed can be tweaked.  Also, it is possible to raise and lower the overall height of a hospital bed. This feature is not available in so many adjustable beds.

Optional side rails can be incorporated in a hospital bed. These side rails vary in style and length. They help to prevent the patient from falling off the bed. The side rails of adjustable beds do not have so many capabilities and they are limited in styles.

If the weight of the patient is immense, the best option would be to use a bariatric hospital bed. Bariatric hospital beds come in different widths – 42 inches, 48 inches, and 54 inches. These beds have the ability to accommodate patients with weight between 500 pounds and 900 pounds. Bariatric hospital beds usually have impressive electric capabilities. However, it is important to state that bariatric hospital beds are usually more expensive than standard hospital beds. There are different sizes of adjustable beds and they use standard size mattresses. Adjustable bed sizes include twin XL, full XL, and queen sizes.

Does the height of the hospital bed have an impact?

One major advantage of using a hospital bed is that its height can be tweaked and adjusted. Due to this, getting in and out of the bed becomes easier for the patient. In most cases, a hospital bed can go as low or as high as you want. So, it can be adjusted to suit the height and convenience of the patient.

Should I opt for an electric hospital bed?

As earlier explained, your choice of hospital bed should be based on factors such as mobility and size of the patient. Whether it is manual adjustment or electric adjustment, there are so many options available. Here are a few

Manual (hand crank) hospital bed requires that the care-giver be able-bodied

It usually has three hand cranks and they are most commonly found at the foot of the bed. One of the cranks is used for adjusting the head another is used for raising and lowering the foot, while the last one does the job of adjusting the overall height of the bed. If the patient can move alone, you may opt for this option. Mobility here implies that the patient can adjust his or her position without much support. 

The semi-electric option gives the patient some autonomy

This one is relatively costlier than the manual type. However, it gives the patient more autonomy in how they move. It has a crank which can be used to adjust the overall height of the bed as well as a hand-held electric control which can be used to adjust the position of the head and foot.

The full-electric option provides so much independence

If a patient needs to go in and out of bed from time to time, this option is ideal because it gives the patient a lot of independence. It has a hand-held control that can be used to tweak the height of the bed as well as its foot. It is also useful in a case where the patient doesn’t have a caregiver to adjust the position and height of the bed. If you are thinking long-terms, this option is the most cost-effective.

Is it possible to use a regular mattress on a hospital bed?

The answer to this is straightforward. It is not possible and there are three reasons for this.

  1. A standard mattress will not fit into a hospital bed
  2. The design of a hospital bed is such that it bends when the bed is adjusted.
  3. Hospital bed mattresses are made to prevent bedsores: If a patient lie in bed all day, pressure ulcers and bedsores are inevitable. These ulcers and sores may appear on parts of the body like shoulder blades, lower back, heels, and elbow. These injuries are not easy to heal or treat. It takes a lot of time before the patient recovers from them. To prevent pressure ulcers, the design of a hospital bed is such that:
  4. Airflow is encouraged
  5. Pressure is distributed evenly
  6. Pressure relief is prioritized

Preventing pressure ulcers and bed sores is better than treating or curing them. So, it is better to invest in a quality hospital bed and mattress.

What type of mattress should I buy for my hospital bed?

Before choosing a mattress for your hospital bed, you must be able to answer the following questions.

  • Is the patient mobile or can the patient change positions independently?
  • What is the weight of the patient?
  • How much muscle mass does the patient have?
  • How long will the patient

Is it okay to buy the mattress and bed as a complete set?

It is possible to buy the hospital bed, mattress and side rails set as a unit or individually. It all depends on your financial ability and the cost implication.

What other accessories do I need for my hospital bed?

  • Bed Rails: They are also called side rails. They are an excellent addition if there is a high chance the patient will fall out of bed. So, it is designed to prevent accidental tumble. It can either be half or full length. If a patient does not need too much assistance to get out of bed, the half-length option is ideal. However, if the patient needs to be supported in and out of bed, the full length side rail is ideal.
  • Sheets
  • Tables: For bend-bound patients, a rolling table makes it easier for tasks to be executed. This makes it easier for the patient to eat, write, or read. Invariably, this improves the comfort and well-being of the patient.
  • Trapeze
  • Overlays or mattress toppers

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