Adult Portable Bed Rails: Benefits and Safety Measures
Portable bed rails are ideal for an individual with a disability who may have a little difficulty getting in and out of bed. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) designates this assistive device as “any bed rail product or device that is attachable and removable from a bed, not designed as part of the bed by the manufacturer and is installed on or used along the side of a bed.” The rail easily folds for travel or storage and may include storage space for small handy items.
Portable bed rails are commonly used in homes, assisted living and long-term care facilities, and nursing homes. Consumers can purchase them in a variety of styles, shapes and sizes. Other benefits of using portable bed rails are:
- Bed rails provide a safety barrier to prevent falls at night and offer a feeling of comfort and security.
- They allow people with limited strength or physical disability to maintain their independence and get into and out of bed without other assistance.
- They aid in repositioning, such a sitting up without help and provide users with easy access to controls and personal items.
Safety Tips for Caregivers
People who have an altered mental status, a physical limitation or other medical condition, are susceptible to falling or becoming trapped. They can get stuck between the bed rail bars or between the rail and the mattress or headboard. If you are a caregiver, you should check bed rails regularly to ensure they remain firmly installed and the patient is using them for the intended purposes. Watch for areas of gaps between the rails and mattress created by the patient’s movement or shifting of the bed’s position. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and make sure the bed rails are compatible with the mattress and bed frame.
The FDA indicates that “portable rails can either be regulated by FDA as medical devices or by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) as consumer products, depending upon their intended use.” Consumers can purchase portable bed rail products without a prescription and without the recommendation of a health care provider. Carmichael’s locations in Crowley, Lafayette and Lake Charles offer portable bed rails to meet the individual needs of the patient. Contact us to speak to one of our customer service representatives for more information.