Bed Steps for Elderly People: Safely Getting In and Out of High Beds

large bed that needs bed stepsGetting in and out of bed is easy when you’re young and healthy. It’s something you do every single day, usually without even thinking twice about it. But sometimes when you get older, this once easy activity becomes very difficult and even dangerous. Weakness in the body, illness or stiffness makes it difficult for seniors to sit up and lay down. It also makes it difficult to lift their legs into and out of the bed. They may also have trouble maneuvering into a safe position for sitting on the bed.

There are a number of aids that can make this everyday part of life easier for seniors, like bed step stools for high beds. These bedtime aids will also help to protect seniors from injuries or serious falls during their nightly routine. If you or your loved one has trouble at bedtime, try bed steps for elderly people who need a little extra help.

Comparison Table: Best Bed Steps for the Elderly

Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
Top Pick!
AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
Safer Option
MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
Total Height
13"
8.5" to 10.5"
8"
15"
16"
Step Height
7"
8.5" to 10.5"
4"
7.5"
7"
Weight
-
13 lbs
18 lbs
19 lbs
5.6 lbs
Weight Capacity
-
300 lbs
400 lbs
650 lbs
300 lbs
One of the more decorative choices of bed steps but caution should be used with slicker, wooden finishes.
The step on this stool is anti-slip and adjustable in height. The dual handles are adjustable too or a custom fit. A bit more clinical looking though.
A portable staircase for your bed. Two handrails and non-slip carpeted steps make this one of the safest options. But, a bit pricier than the others.
Well built and sturdy solid wood steps with a welded frame. Supports up to 650 lbs.
Inexpensive, entry level bed steps solution. Sturdy construction with non-slip steps but no handles or balance support.
Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
Total Height
13"
Step Height
7"
Weight
-
Weight Capacity
-
One of the more decorative choices of bed steps but caution should be used with slicker, wooden finishes.
Top Pick!
AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
Total Height
8.5" to 10.5"
Step Height
8.5" to 10.5"
Weight
13 lbs
Weight Capacity
300 lbs
The step on this stool is anti-slip and adjustable in height. The dual handles are adjustable too or a custom fit. A bit more clinical looking though.
Safer Option
MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
Total Height
8"
Step Height
4"
Weight
18 lbs
Weight Capacity
400 lbs
A portable staircase for your bed. Two handrails and non-slip carpeted steps make this one of the safest options. But, a bit pricier than the others.
Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
Total Height
15"
Step Height
7.5"
Weight
19 lbs
Weight Capacity
650 lbs
Well built and sturdy solid wood steps with a welded frame. Supports up to 650 lbs.
Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
Total Height
16"
Step Height
7"
Weight
5.6 lbs
Weight Capacity
300 lbs
Inexpensive, entry level bed steps solution. Sturdy construction with non-slip steps but no handles or balance support.

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:55 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


Why Use Bed Stools for High Beds?

Bed steps make it easier for seniors who have tall beds to lift themselves into bed. As seniors get older, they sometimes lose strength in their legs. Arthritis or pain in the joints can also make it difficult for seniors to climb into a high bed. Declining balance might make getting out of bed difficult.

Bed steps are small and sturdy, and they can give you a boost that makes your bedtime routine easier. They are typically made out of wood or other types of strong materials. They can be particularly helpful if your bed is higher than usual or if you are short. Small pets such as cats and dogs may make use of them as well! The steps can be used to help the animal climb onto the bed without scratching the linen.

bed in a nice well-lit bedroomTips to Avoid Falls at Bedtime

Falls are often devastating for seniors. Seniors often have more fragile bones and can end up severely injured from falls. They also take longer to heal from injuries such as broken bones. And sometimes, they don’t even heal completely. This can lead to long-term physical limitations and even complete dependence. To reduce the chance of falls, take note of the following conditions.

Bedrooms should be well lit. Seniors often have diminished eyesight, and darkness makes this worse. Check that their bedrooms are well lit and obstructions moved out of the pathways.

Try to keep their walkers or canes nearby and close to the bed in case they have to get up in the middle of the night. Having that extra support handy can make a world of difference, and help them hoist themselves out of bed.

Take a look at the slippers they wear at night. Are they sturdy? Do they have non-slip bases? These safety features are ones most people don’t think about when looking for soft, comfy slippers, but for seniors, they’re a must-have to keep them safe in their bedrooms.

Remove any loose rugs from the floor, as they can bunch up and cause feet, canes, or walkers to become stuck and may cause trips or falls. Of course, if the floor has a layer of carpeting that isn’t as easily removable, that’s probably not going to be an issue as long as it doesn’t tend to bunch up.

Assess your senior’s procedure for getting in and out of bed and provide aids if necessary. You can try leg lifts or support rails on the side of the bed to help them with the necessary movements if that extra support would help them.

Check the height of the bed. If it’s too high, the senior will have to slide out of it, which may cause slips and falls or lots of pressure on the legs. If it’s too low, they may have trouble standing up again in the morning. This is where bed steps can help give you the small boost you need in order to reach the bed.

Talk to your senior and their doctor about what medications they take and any side effects. If some medications make them dizzy or sleepy, this can be dangerous at bedtime.

Professional Assessment

If you have trouble getting in and out of bed by yourself, you should set up a consultation with a professional. Physical therapists or occupational therapists can evaluate your movements and limitations. They can show you new ways to safely and easily get yourself into bed. They can also suggest a range of devices that may help, like steps for high beds, and train you on how to use them correctly. If you have trouble and aren’t sure what might help, this is the best source for reliable information.

high bed in a big bedroom

Steps for Getting into Bed

This will depend on you. It will depend on your physical limitations, on your physical state, and on the layout of your bedroom. Try the following steps and determine how they work for your unique situation.

  • Move so the backs of your legs touch the bed. If you are too short, or the bed is too tall, use bed steps to give you a boost.
  • Hold on somewhere, a rail on the side of the bed is good here.
  • Bend your hips to sit.
  • If you need to, scoot backward until you are safely on the mattress.
  • Use a leg lifter or other device to help lift or move your whole body onto the bed if necessary.

Steps for Getting Out of Bed

Many seniors have trouble getting out of bed. You may lack the core strength to move from lying down to sitting. Or if you are able to sit up, you may suffer from dizziness because of the change of posture. Talk to your doctor or other health professionals if any of these issues impede your movements. Until you can do that, there are several general steps you can try to make this easier.

  • Roll to the side of the bed and lower your feet over the edge.
  • Sit up. A bar or something else to grip can help with this if you don’t have the strength.
  • If you feel dizzy, remain seated until it passes.
  • If you use a cane or a walker with wheels, ensure it’s in the right position.
  • Put your feet at hip distance apart and lean forward.
  • Stand up. If you have trouble doing so, rock back and forwards for momentum.

Bed Steps for High Beds

So now that we understand the advantages of different aids like a handle bar or a close by cane, let’s dive into bed step stools and why they’re particularly useful for high beds. Many seniors have raised beds because they think that’ll make it easier to get into and out of. Unfortunately, if it’s not perfectly suited to their height, they’re going to need a booster, like a step stool for high beds, to help them maneuver their routine.

To use them safely, make sure the steps are pushed up securely against the bed. If there’s space in between the bed and the step stool, it could slip out from underneath them as they’re getting out of the bed.

The step stool should also be placed in line with where the senior’s feet would land as they get out of bed. If they have to bend over trying to adjust it, they may fall over. For bed step stools for high beds especially, you may want to make sure that their cane or some other handheld security aid is near the steps. This will give them added balance as they make their way up and down.

a very tall canopy bed in a well decorated bedroom with a blue rugRecommended Bed Steps for Elderly People

If you decide that bed steps are necessary, there are a few guidelines you should follow. First and foremost, make sure they are made of sturdy materials like wood or metal. If they collapse under your weight, the results will be extremely serious. Also, make sure they are the right height for your senior and the bed. If you have to flop onto the bed from ones that are too high, so you shouldn’t use them.

Finally, make sure your senior can use them properly. This will depend on your senior’s physical condition and abilities. If they don’t have the stability or strength to climb the stairs safely, bed steps will cause more problems than they solve. This could lead to severe falls and injuries. So, if you’re thinking about bed steps, ensure that your senior can use them safely, and that they’re actually improving their quality of life, not making it more difficult.

 

Kings Brand Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage

Bed stools for high beds like these from Kings Brand look a bit more elegant than some of the other bed steps I recommend. They also come in a variety of finishes to match most bedroom decor.

These are basically a simple 2 step stool with no handle. Lifting the lid reveals hidden storage which most everyone can use. Very basic assembly is required before using.

This style of bed step is best for seniors who have good balance and don’t require the use of a handle. Do not use these with slippers, however. The slickness of the wood finish may be increased with soft fabric slippers. It would be best to use these only while barefoot or add some anti-slip tape.

Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
355 Reviews
Kings Brand Dark Cherry Finish Wood Bedroom Step Stool With Storage
  • Kings brand Furniture dark Cherry Finish wood Bedroom step stool with storage.
  • This Functional Item can be used as a ladder or a step stool and provides a little extra storage space.
  • This piece offers a durable wood Construction, and a rich Finish.
  • Dimensions: 13"W x 13"D x 13"H.
  • Simple assembly required.

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:55 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool – TOP PICK!

I really liked this adjustable step stool for high beds in my earlier post about safe step stools, and I think it has a lot of use as a bed step also.

This step area of this stool has an anti-slip mat and adjusts up and down. So do both the handles. This allows the user to get a custom fit based on the height of their bed. The dual handles offer support and better balance while climbing in and out of the bed.

The only real negative for this one is that it does look a bit like a medical product with the glossy white finish. It also may not reach high enough for extremely high beds. But, this is a highly functional bed step options especially for seniors with more advanced medical problems.

AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
100 Reviews
AdjustaStep(tm) DoubleSafe Deluxe Step Stool/Footstool with Dual Handle/Handrail, Height Adjustable....
  • HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE- The only height adjustable step stool with handle available. Customize both step and handle height in seconds.
  • THE SAFER STEP STOOL- The ONLY STEPSTOOL with 2 Handrails. Customize the step height and handle height based on the users physical capability and...
  • THE MORE VERSATILE STEP STOOL- Customize the step height and handle height based on the task at hand. AdjustaStep is NOT MADE IN CHINA and has no...
  • MODERN, CLEAN DESIGN- Modern 2016 white/blue design. No need to settle for old-style, industrial-looking chrome or silver vein finishes.
  • ALL-METAL CONSTRUCTION- No plastic parts here! Robust all-metal construction for superior safety, reliability and durability.

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:24 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System

These wooden bed steps literally look like a portable staircase. After some minor assembly, you can push them right up against the bed for quick use.

These bed steps have 2 lacquered wooden stairs and are covered with anti-slip carpeting. The handrails are also lacquered and sanded smooth. This setup makes it very easy for elderly people to get in and out of bed with 2 hand support.

I recommend these steps for seniors and elderly with pretty bad balance or joint issues. The non-slip step surface along with having 2 handrails to hold onto makes them extremely safe for these folks. They do cost a bit more than others.

MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
3 Reviews
MTS Medical Supply Two Side Rails Bed Step System
  • Makes getting into and out of bed easier
  • Steps are covered with foot-friendly carpet
  • Can be used on either side of the bed
  • Ideal for individuals with balance and mobility problems

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:55 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps

This multi-function device (step stool, bed steps, even a plant stand!) is made of welded steel and solid wood steps. Even better – it ships fully assembled!

Because it is so well built, these bed steps support up to 650 lbs. So, they are a good choice to use with larger seniors who may not be able to climb up in bed due to limited joint mobility and other medical issues.

These should work well for more active seniors who need a little help getting up and down. They do not have handles or rails however so they should not be used with elderly people who have balance issues. Like other wooden steps with slicker finishes, they should not be used with slippers.

Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
30 Reviews
Design 59 inc Acacia Hardwood Step Stool / Bed Steps / Plant Stand, NO ASSEMBLY REQUIRED
  • Highest quality build with utmost quality control standards!
  • No Assembly Required- Ships as a Single Piece! Premium quality welded steel and hardwood!
  • Dimensions: 18" Wide x 16" Deep x 15" High with 650lb weight capacity
  • Versatile functionality as a step stool, bed steps, plant stand or accent storage
  • Chic retro walnut finish that matches our bedroom nightstands, Side Tables and C-Tables

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:55 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads

These Rubbermaid steps are a good entry level idea for seniors who are beginning to have trouble getting in and out of bed. They are an inexpensive way to explore the option of using bed steps.

Being a Rubbermaid product, they are well built and sturdy, supporting up to 300 lbs. Each step has an anti-slip rubber mat for safety and to reduce the chances of them slipping off.

Like some of the others above, these steps do not have handles or rails. So, they should not be used with seniors who have balance issues or advanced medical problems.

Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
1,033 Reviews
Rubbermaid RM-P2 2-Step Molded Plastic Stool with Non-Slip Step Treads, 300-Pound Capacity, Black...
  • 2-step molded plastic stool with a black finish
  • Designed with cutout handles and non-slip step treads
  • Lightweight for easy portability
  • 300-pound load capacity
  • Comes with a 1-year limited warranty

Images & Ratings from Amazon Product Advertising API - Updated on 2018-07-21 at 12:55 - contains affiliate links (see footer).


Final Thoughts

Getting in and out of bed can seem like a simple activity to most people. But for some elderly seniors, it can be a downright dangerous task. Weakness, illness or pain can restrict your movements and your overall stability. This can lead to falls and injuries such as broken bones or head injuries that have long-term repercussions. Using simple aids such as bed steps and step stools for high beds can make your senior’s nightly and morning routine much easier and safer. These aids can help you avoid serious injuries and allow you to remain independent as well as safe. If you have trouble at bedtime, these tools are immensely helpful.

Do you have any experience with step stools for high beds? Did you find that they added more safety to your bedtime routine? If you have any tips or tricks, we would love to hear them. Please share below!

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