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Stairlift vs bathroom downstairs

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
63,887
0
69
Dundee
It might also be worth noting that you can get VAT relief if having a new bathroom installed. When we moved house I got our en-suite converted into a wet room. The builder who was doing the work sorted out the paper work. I seem to recall the relief is on building materials. I’m not sure how regulations compare in Scotland/England.

 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
14,667
0
South coast
Hi @CLau256

Her partner is nagging us to buy a stairlift so has got my Uncle on side for that - I think because he’s scared of her falling down the stairs and it’s inconvenient for him to have to stand behind her every time when they go upstairs.
I think it likely that your mums partner is not anticipating that he will have to supervise her using the stairlift and is thinking that she will be able to go up and down the stairs without him. I think that before you go any further with sourcing a stair lift, you need to make it quite clear to him that he will need to supervise this and will need to help her once she gets to the top of the stairs too. Do you think that he will take this on board? It strikes me that as her dementia progresses he will have to be inconvenienced further and further and this may cause problems. Do please keep an eye open for signs that he is not meeting her needs.

@Tilly13 - we got a second bannister following an OT assessment which was organised by our GP. I suspect that there are several routes.
 

jennifer1967

Registered User
Mar 15, 2020
2,367
0
Southampton
the OT we had came from the community team. she actually came with the social worker and assessed our needs at the same time. the OT from the council will only be allocated because we have been referred to adaptions team at the council and we rent a council house. thats why i asked if you rented or owned the house
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
1,252
0
High Peak
I'd be very dubious about a stairlift. My mum simply 'forgot' how to sit down - she just couldn't work it out. This was a major problem getting her from standing and walking with a zimmer to sitting in her chair. She'd turn the wrong way, couldn't follow instructions, etc. The same occurred when she went to the loo, often resulting in her not making it on time. As balance is often affected too, I think a stairlift would have been a death trap for my mum.

Also, as Martin says, maybe also consider the value of the house with a stairlift or a downstairs bathroom added.
 

DreamsAreReal

Registered User
Oct 17, 2015
60
0
I was keen on getting a stairlift for my pwd, but the OT said in her experience that they are not suitable for PWD’s as they can’t understand how to operate them safely.
 

CLau256

Registered User
Jan 26, 2021
16
0
One of my main obstacles at the moment is my uncle siding with my Grandmas partner. All he keeps saying is “we need to think about him and his needs” and “we shouldn’t be turning his downstairs into some type of hospital ward” meaning with a bedroom or bathroom downstairs as he is favouring a stairlift and that it will be the answer to all of her problems. In my opinion, my grandma comes first not her partner, he’s not the one with dementia.
 

lollyc

Registered User
Sep 9, 2020
166
0
My Mum's mobilty has decreased to the point that she cannot stand unaided and cannot walk. I manage to move her alone, with a Mackworth, but I really would question how someone in their 80's is going to manage that. If your Grandma is already beginning to struggle with sitting to standing, how is the partner going to get her off the stairlift safely? Or the loo? Or out of bed? And yes, my house looks like a hospital ward - or as someone said on here, Care Home Shabby Chic (I can think of another word to replace chic....). I'm afraid that goes with the territory.
 

CLau256

Registered User
Jan 26, 2021
16
0
My Mum's mobilty has decreased to the point that she cannot stand unaided and cannot walk. I manage to move her alone, with a Mackworth, but I really would question how someone in their 80's is going to manage that. If your Grandma is already beginning to struggle with sitting to standing, how is the partner going to get her off the stairlift safely? Or the loo? Or out of bed? And yes, my house looks like a hospital ward - or as someone said on here, Care Home Shabby Chic (I can think of another word to replace chic....). I'm afraid that goes with the territory.
Thanks so much for this. That is exactly how I feel that with the illness you just have to make sacrifices and unfortunately if that does mean renovating the downstairs into a more liveable space then that’s what needs to be done I think. I perhaps wonder if other people in my family are not taking into account how she may deteriorate and how fast (or slow) that might happen, but the matter of fact is it’s probably inevitable that she is going to get worse at some point. She’s already starting to show signs of progression with not knowing when she needs a wee and is having accidents in bed and when she’s sat on the sofa etc.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
14,667
0
South coast
She’s already starting to show signs of progression with not knowing when she needs a wee and is having accidents in bed and when she’s sat on the sofa etc.
Sounds like she needs a referral to the continence clinic. In the meantime could she be persuaded to use tenna lady pants? Id also get a couple of kylie sheets to go on the bed and perhaps another to go on the sofa. They absorb a lot of liquid and are washable. Im sure that the last thing her partner wants is for the place to start smelling of wee..........
 

Catastrophe

Registered User
Feb 15, 2019
45
0
We have just had a downstairs bathroom put in for my Dad. It has made my life so much easier. It was a lot of disruption. And we were not able to get any funding as on the day of the visit from OH dad managed to have no mobility or balance problems. And assured them climbing stairs and using the Stair lift was very easy. It's not and he can usually hardly stagger from one room to another. Mind you he slept for almost 2 days after the visit.
I was interested to hear about the issues with Stair lifts as ours has been worrying me for ages. But as he lives downstairs now it shouldn't be an issue.
My advice wod be downstairs wet room in the longer term it's worth the disruption. Only word of caution is it will probably be longer than 5 weeks, ours took 3 months and still has a couple of cosmetic issues to be completed.
 

Catastrophe

Registered User
Feb 15, 2019
45
0
We have just had a downstairs bathroom put in for my Dad. It has made my life so much easier. It was a lot of disruption. And we were not able to get any funding as on the day of the visit from OH dad managed to have no mobility or balance problems. And assured them climbing stairs and using the Stair lift was very easy. It's not and he can usually hardly stagger from one room to another. Mind you he slept for almost 2 days after the visit.
I was interested to hear about the issues with Stair lifts as ours has been worrying me for ages. But as he lives downstairs now it shouldn't be an issue.
My advice wod be downstairs wet room in the longer term it's worth the disruption. Only word of caution is it will probably be longer than 5 weeks, ours took 3 months and still has a couple of cosmetic issues to be completed.
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
66
0
I think you need to think in advance and for a worst case scenario. Downstairs wetroom and adjoining bedroom/bedsit all with wide doors. I have alzheimers diagnposed two years ago. There is no way I could cope with a stairlift now due to balance problems. I wish you all the best in finding a solution
 

CLau256

Registered User
Jan 26, 2021
16
0
so it seems like the stairlift has won. grandma has been getting stuck on the stairs and nearly fell backwards all the way from the top last night because her legs just gave up on her and stopped working. my dad and boyfriend had to rush over and physically carry her up the stairs. over the past few weeks we have had various people in, physios, therapists and she’s seen the GP who says she needs a stairlift because she’s a danger to herself and to her partner george who follows behind/in front of her on the stairs every time. every time i have been down whilst she’s had her occupational therapist there which i arranged to get various aids fitted in the house, ALL George does is talk about the stair lift and shove the leaflet in their faces. Takes away my opportunity to ask about all other aids my grandma needs because he just talks about the stair lift 24/7 and it’s really angering me. Now everyone has said she needs a stairlift he is in his element. I am disappointed as no one seems to be countering her Alzheimer’s into this decision and the progression that the disease might get worse, and as mentioned above it wouldn’t be suitable. I have said to George this isn’t going to solve all of the problems but it’s all he cares about. I’ve said she might not like it and she might get scared, he’s not listening to anyone. With her legs giving way, it means when it happens she can’t even walk with her zimmer! I don’t know how a stairlift is a solution to if her legs give way when she’s in the middle of the living room!

I just know they are going to get a stairlift fitted and there will just constantly be more problems.
 

Weasell

Registered User
Oct 21, 2019
1,102
0
so it seems like the stairlift has won. grandma has been getting stuck on the stairs and nearly fell backwards all the way from the top last night because her legs just gave up on her and stopped working. my dad and boyfriend had to rush over and physically carry her up the stairs. over the past few weeks we have had various people in, physios, therapists and she’s seen the GP who says she needs a stairlift because she’s a danger to herself and to her partner george who follows behind/in front of her on the stairs every time. every time i have been down whilst she’s had her occupational therapist there which i arranged to get various aids fitted in the house, ALL George does is talk about the stair lift and shove the leaflet in their faces. Takes away my opportunity to ask about all other aids my grandma needs because he just talks about the stair lift 24/7 and it’s really angering me. Now everyone has said she needs a stairlift he is in his element. I am disappointed as no one seems to be countering her Alzheimer’s into this decision and the progression that the disease might get worse, and as mentioned above it wouldn’t be suitable. I have said to George this isn’t going to solve all of the problems but it’s all he cares about. I’ve said she might not like it and she might get scared, he’s not listening to anyone. With her legs giving way, it means when it happens she can’t even walk with her zimmer! I don’t know how a stairlift is a solution to if her legs give way when she’s in the middle of the living room!

I just know they are going to get a stairlift fitted and there will just constantly be more problems.
I was wondering? Could she not get a downstairs wet room and a stair lift.
The very obvious problem is money, but a very luxury wet room only costs the same money as two months care home fees?
As pointed out above , getting a wet room isn’t a five minute job, the stair lift could tide her over until the wet room was completed.
Did they mention any contribution towards kit? ( stairlift or shower room ) or have those days gone?
 

CLau256

Registered User
Jan 26, 2021
16
0
I was wondering? Could she not get a downstairs wet room and a stair lift.
The very obvious problem is money, but a very luxury wet room only costs the same money as two months care home fees?
As pointed out above , getting a wet room isn’t a five minute job, the stair lift could tide her over until the wet room was completed.
Did they mention any contribution towards kit? ( stairlift or shower room ) or have those days gone?

Money is not a problem luckily. The problem is just her refusing any additional help and amendments to her house and then she will get really upset and distressed over it. We are going to fit a wet room downstairs too, hopefully we can get VAT exempt materials if I look into that. Unfortunately this particular lady that came round said she needs to refer on to another individual to review the means for a stairlift and any contributions towards it, so we don’t know right now to be honest
 

Weasell

Registered User
Oct 21, 2019
1,102
0
Money is not a problem luckily. The problem is just her refusing any additional help and amendments to her house and then she will get really upset and distressed over it. We are going to fit a wet room downstairs too, hopefully we can get VAT exempt materials if I look into that. Unfortunately this particular lady that came round said she needs to refer on to another individual to review the means for a stairlift and any contributions towards it, so we don’t know right now to be honest
It’s so slow and painful isn’t it ?
That’s why we have this forum, the ‘simple’ never is !
Even when you don’t get the ‘correct ‘ answer to your problems it’s just nice to chat to people who have sympathy and understanding of what you are going through!
One potential tip, would be to look at the compassionate communication thread and see if it offers any inspiration for ‘selling ‘ the shower room idea.
Some time ago a loft insulation salesman got my mother to write out a cheque for £5800 for loft insulation the property didn’t even need. I don’t know what he said to my mother but she was parroting ‘ I need to invest in my bungalow’ and ‘ this will put additional value on the property when it is sold’.
So I suppose I am saying think about an approach where you don’t talk about her needs ( which can kind of be taken as criticism, you need the shower room because of what you can’t do) but labour the fact she needs to keep her property ‘up to date’ and give it the modern facilities That future buyers might want?
 

Sarasa

Volunteer Host
Apr 13, 2018
2,556
0
Hi @CLau256 , I'm hoping the Occupational Therapists saw through your grandmother's partner's insistence about the stairlift and were looking at what your grandmother actually needs. Whatever happens it sounds like she needs more help coming in, than she is actually getting. A downstairs wet room sounds good, but if she can't actually get to it, it isn't going to help.
Do you think George might be in the early stages of dementia too? Obsessing about things sounds very like my mother's behaviour when she was still at home She got stuck on whatever she thought would improve her life and shifting her from it was very tricky. In mum's case it was changing the locks so the neighbours couldn't get in (they weren't).
 

CLau256

Registered User
Jan 26, 2021
16
0
It’s so slow and painful isn’t it ?
That’s why we have this forum, the ‘simple’ never is !
Even when you don’t get the ‘correct ‘ answer to your problems it’s just nice to chat to people who have sympathy and understanding of what you are going through!
One potential tip, would be to look at the compassionate communication thread and see if it offers any inspiration for ‘selling ‘ the shower room idea.
Some time ago a loft insulation salesman got my mother to write out a cheque for £5800 for loft insulation the property didn’t even need. I don’t know what he said to my mother but she was parroting ‘ I need to invest in my bungalow’ and ‘ this will put additional value on the property when it is sold’.
So I suppose I am saying think about an approach where you don’t talk about her needs ( which can kind of be taken as criticism, you need the shower room because of what you can’t do) but labour the fact she needs to keep her property ‘up to date’ and give it the modern facilities That future buyers might want?
yeah thank you, that’s a good idea. i always try take that approach, so does my dad. unfortunately it is George who will say “you need a stair lift because you can’t walk” or “you need a stair lift because you can’t make it to the toilet in the time and keep having accidents” and he makes her feel bad for it and almost embarrasses her. he says “if you think you can walk then - go on get up and do it”. We keep telling him off for it but he keeps on doing it and if you try and speak to her all relaxed and composed, he just butts in 24/7 and completely then reverses all the calm talking you have just done. He’s the one whose with her all the time, so god only knows what he’s saying to her that she does and doesn’t need. I don’t know if you can tell but we aren’t best keen on George and find him quite irritating, but he’s been my grandmas partner for 20 years.
 

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