Adjustable Bed Advice?

Thomas933

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Hello: I hope that everyone is hanging in there. My husband and I have decided we need an adjustable bed. Hopefully one where he and I have separate control. It is important that it moves up and down as he is having more and more trouble getting up out of bed. Any advice or success stories about non-hospital beds that have worked for you and your pALS?

Thank you.
 

KateEmerson

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Hi Thomas, we initially had an adjustable bed that worked great for my husband (PALS), until we needed the vertical height adjustment capability. We ended up buying a hospital bed for that feature alone. Our member MVFinVa mentioned in a post last year that they had an adjustable bed that could electronically adjust the height. It was a split king size made by Flex-a- Bed and his side had that feature. I just looked at their website and it's the Hi-Low model. I suspect it's not inexpensive but guess it's less than buying two beds like we did. Kate
 

KarenNWendyn

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I really didn’t want a hospital bed. But I was having trouble getting out of my bed, so I knew I needed something with adjustable height. And I started having difficulty turning in bed, so I knew I needed something with bars I could grab, while I could still grab. And I knew I needed a twin width so a caregiver could access me from either side without hurting her back, So when all was said and done, I ended up with a hospital bed.

It’s ugly and noisy, but it does the job. And having those bars to grab onto has been a huge help. I have the bars in the “down” position but I can still grab the tops of them to help me turn. Raising the head of the bed has made it easier to sit up so I can position myself to get out of the bed. The twin width has also made it easier for me to do ROM exercises. I like having the foot board to push my floppy feet into. And there is plenty of room to maneuver a Hoyer underneath when I get to that stage.

There are other options as you will find among these threads. Just like with wheelchairs and vans, you have to get one that suits not only your present needs but also your anticipated needs. Best of luck.
 

lgelb

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I continue to recommend considering a hospital bed that you can place adjacent to yours a couple of inches apart. In addition to adjusting the height and head/feet angles, you can swap out mattresses and overlays as needed, and have room on every side of the bed [assuming you don't use a headboard or footboard] for his care, changing linens and transfers.

With a split king, you lose at least one side of the bed and maneuvering room for the Hoyer and pivots. I understand the lure of the adjustable bed, I just don't want anyone who can't afford it to have to pay twice, if it doesn't work out. Medicare does contribute to the hospital bed.

With linens on a boardless frame, a hospital bed really doesn't look like one, and the adjacent bed shouldn't be that much these days (I am currently sleeping well on a $50 frame, $150 mattress, $200 overlay).

For context, Larry got out of bed every day until his last week, so I am not saying this from the perspective of being "confined to bed," but rather for the considerable care that must be given there.
 

Nuts

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I second what Laurie said. We bought a split king adjustable bed, but eventually needed a hospital bed for the height adjustment. Unfortunately, the first hospital bed did not have the Trendelenburg feature. Bed #3 did. We ended up with a hospital bed for hubby with all the bells and whistles, and you want them, trust me, and next to it my half of the split king, on wheels. In the morning I rolled it away so we could tend him, and at night I rolled it next to his bed. Because I'm planning a mobility accessible Air BnB next year, I kept the bed. I took the headboard, footboard, and side rails off and put a regular mattress on it, and aside from the foot pedals you can not tell the difference. It looks like I have a regular king.

If money is a consideration, get a twin bed and a hospital bed and put them together. If you want adjustable features for yourself, get a twin adjustable bed for yourself.

Becky
 

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Thomas933

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Thank you everyone! We spoke with our in-home peeps today - they recommend the Beauty Rest adjustable bed. In New England it’s caljed the “Tom Brady bed” because he endorses it. (I asked if he comes with the bed cuz that would be cool).

Thank you!
 

lgelb

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Tom's merits aside, from the pics I see, since the base height does not change and there are fixed legs, does not look like it will work with a Hoyer at all. So you would have to buy another bed later on (possibly not too much later, either).
 

swalker

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I have been struggling with this decision for the last year or so. The doctors have recommended a hospital bed, but I have had a very difficult time accepting that recommendation.

On our spring trip to Yellowstone, we ran into a wonderful woman who lost her husband to ALS some time ago. She offered to donate their hospital bed to us. I am still kicking and screaming about it, but it looks like the bed will arrive in a bit over a week.

I can't tell you how much all the discussions of hospital beds has helped me. Thank you to everyone for sharing their thoughts and experiences.

Steve
 

vltsra

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Like Kate, we have the Hi-Lo Flex-a-Bed. My PALS really likes it as he is comfortable and I am able to sleep next to him. He does still struggle now to get up but at least he is able to be comfortable. I decided he would not be as comfortable in a standard hospital bed as it is so small for him.
 

lgelb

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I believe everyone but the very petite should be in a hospital bed 80" long, those ~6-ft. plus should be in one 84".
 

kitkat

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My husband sleeps on a hospital bed we received from the ALSA loan pool here in Minnesota. It has an air pump for alternating pressure. For his comfort, I purchased a very good 3" Serta mattress topper, which I got on sale for 1/2 price plus 30% coupon:). My PALS loves the topper & is very comfortable. That is so important, especially since he is spending more & more time in bed. We think that having the hospital bed, with the height adjustment and head & foot adjustments, is a must. It is so much easier to tend to his needs. Plus, getting him in/out of the Hoyer sling is much easier on by back because I can raise the bed & I don't have to bend so far.
 

Nuts

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I believe everyone but the very petite should be in a hospital bed 80" long, those ~6-ft. plus should be in one 84".
Good point, Laurie. I'd forgotten about the extension...I've also removed that for now. I'd forgotten how much we went through getting the right bed.
 

MVFinVA

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We were given a king size Flex-a-Bed from a former CALS, who had received it from a former CALS. It had a height adjustment on my PALS side. It worked well for us, but my PALS was able to walk a little until the end. It did allow us to stay in the same bed until a few months before the end. I had to move to another bed only because of my PALS restlessness at night. We passed the bed on to another PALS.
 

Thomas933

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We ended up with a split king adjustable bed with 3 possible frame heights. The 0 gravity takes pressure off my pALS hips and joints. It’s semi-firm to make it easier for him to move.

I hope we get to share this bed for many years.
 
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