Brain Awareness Month: Supporting The Fight One Day At A Time

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Mike Hage UltraComfort America

Written By: Alyssa Golden

“Whether I like it or not, I still have cancer. I understand that it hurts, but at the end of the day, I can be positive or not. Being positive is the better option and I have the opportunity to give others encouragement,” says Mike Hage, brain cancer survivor and former Golden Technologies team member. 

Mike’s journey with brain cancer has been anything but easy, as he’s currently fighting his battle for the third time. Despite the many challenges, he has become extremely well-known in the area for his positive spirit, strength and Faith. Mike credits his mentality towards his relationship with God, family and friends. 

“I have the opportunity to show people Christianity, and that’s why I’m not scared. I might get angry or upset, but I know that God loves me and I have an amazing amount of people who love me and want to see me alive,” says Mike.

In 2016, Mike was rushed to the hospital after having a severe seizure. Within minutes of his arrival, he began to have difficulty breathing and then his heart stopped. He and his family would later find out through tests that Mike had a cancerous brain tumor the size of a golf ball that needed to be removed. From that point forward, Mike has endured years of brain cancer surgeries, recoveries and rehabilitation.

“It’s been a whirlwind of emotions, but everyone has wanted to see and help me,” says Mike. After his first diagnosis, the Golden Technologies team got together and held a large fundraising event for Mike at the Jazz Cafe on River Street in Wilkes-Barre, PA. The event entitled “#ChokeOutCancer” helped raise thousands of dollars for Mike along with live music and a live-streamed video of Golden Vice President of Sales, Jason Davis, getting his head shaved.

“Mike isn’t just a friend or former employee; he is family,” says Jason. “My entire family knows him and loves him. As far as getting my head shaved, it was a true honor, but was more so a bonding experience between Mike and myself. He’s an amazing man.”

“Golden has done a lot for me. I would never have asked people to do all that for me,” says Mike. CEO Rich Golden also provided Mike with two custom-built lift chairs to help with his recovery. Mike loves the support and massage feature. “For someone with my body, support is everything,” says Mike.

Mike will be moving soon to the Sunshine State, Florida, with his mom, dad, grandmother, two dogs and two cats! In the meantime, he has been visiting local churches and meeting up with as many people as possible before he leaves. Our UltraComfort family continues to keep Mike and his family in our thoughts and prayers as he continues to navigate through his journey.

June is Brain Awareness Month and July 18-29 is Brain Awareness Week, giving us an opportunity to hold conversations about the brain and progress in brain research.

UltraComfort Reinstates Pre-Pandemic Lead Time

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OLD FORGE, Pa. – Pennsylvania-based manufacturer, UltraComfort America, proudly announces the return of their pre-pandemic, “Quick Ship” lead time. Effective immediately, all in-stock lift recliners will now ship 24-48 hours from order entry instead of the 72-hour lead time that was previously in effect.

UltraComfort’s inventory status and lead times have come a long way since the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020. Workforce and supply chain challenges combined with the increased demand in the furniture industry made it impossible for the lift recliner leader to build and maintain inventory.

“This is a huge milestone for UltraComfort that I am extremely happy to announce,” said Rich Golden, CEO. “For many consumers, they rely on their lift chair to get them through the day. When the lead times increased for reasons beyond our control, we set a goal to find a way to shorten them.”

UltraComfort navigated the many challenges the pandemic presented with shorter lead times in mind. As a result, they have strengthened their workforce, opened a new and more efficient distribution center and successfully negotiated with vendors to meet reasonable lead times.

“These reduced lead times would not have happened if it wasn’t for our hardworking and dedicated team. Each team member in production and traffic, customer and technical service, accounting, marketing, and sales showed up day after day and did everything they could to continue to provide customers with the power lift recliners they so desperately needed,” Golden said. “And for them, I am extremely grateful.”

UltraComfort’s special order lead times remain at 6-8 weeks from order entry.

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About UltraComfort America – UltraComfort America is the retail furniture division of the world’s largest power lift chair manufacturer. A family-owned, family-operated business headquartered in Northeastern Pennsylvania, UltraComfort America is a true American manufacturer offering retailers lift and wellness recliners that exceed industry standards for design, components and warranties.

Why Furniture Matters with Alzheimer’s Disease

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UltraComfort America Eclipse UC562 Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner

Written By: Aline Browning

 

Symptoms to Be On The Lookout For with Alzheimer’s Patients

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) affects over 6 million people in the U.S. currently and it is projected that that number will more than double by 2060. “The number of people living with the disease doubles every 5 years beyond age 65.” And it’s estimated that, “by 2060 more than 14 million Americans will be diagnosed with this most common form of dementia,” according to the CDC (2021). Individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s may not lose their motor skills, but as the condition becomes severe, a patient with Alzheimer’s may struggle with balance, fine motor skills, and communication. This presents a challenge to caregivers to be more vigilant or watchful with their caregiving. It may be difficult for someone living with severe Alzheimer’s to tell you that they have an ingrown toenail that is causing them pain or that they have an ear infection, or even that they have an urge to use the bathroom. So it’s essential that our loved ones with any form of dementia have the proper recliner for ultimate comfort and care.

 

Alzheimer’s and Diabetes

There may also be a link between Alzheimer’s and Diabetes. According UltraComfort America UC562 Eclipse Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner to the American Diabetes Association, “Both type 2 diabetes and Impaired Fasting Glycemia were more prevalent in Alzheimer disease versus non-Alzheimer disease control subjects, so 81% of cases of Alzheimer disease had either type 2 diabetes or IFG.” If an elderly Alzheimer’s patient also has diabetes, it is incredibly important to monitor their feet for the development of neuropathic ulcers. They may not even be aware these ulcers are present because with neuropathy, patients eventually lose sensation in their feet. This need becomes even more apparent when the individual has other conditions that develop where aging may be a risk factor. An Alzheimer’s patient may not be able to communicate that they are developing pressure sores known as decubitus ulcers. Pressure sores develop in the elderly as their skin becomes thin and loses elasticity. When those areas do not get proper airflow and relief from the pressure of that position, a painful sore develops. UltraComfort power lift recliners offer UltraPlush Brisa® fabrics which is a breathable material that allows air to flow to the skin and may reduce the likeliness of a decubitus ulcer forming.

 

How UltraComfort Lift Chairs Can Help Maintain Healthy Feet

Though there have been few studies that actually analyze the foot health of AD patients. There was a study performed by Lopez (2018), on 65 elderly patients with AD that found, “89.04% of those patients had a high presence of foot health problems and 69.86% of those patients were wearing an incorrect sized shoe.” People with severe Alzheimer’s may not be able to communicate that they have foot pain, so it’s important to pay close attention, keep their feet clean, dry, and their toenails neatly trimmed. It’s also important to help them rest and elevate any inflamed areas to reduce pain and swelling. UltraComfort lift chairs with patented Eclipse wellness positioning technology and Zero Gravity lift recliners are able to elevate the feet above the heart to reduce swelling and provide a convenient tool for caregivers to perform foot checks safely and comfortably. 

 

Alzheimer’s Patients Have A Higher Risk of Falling

Spatial perception plays a role in falls with Alzheimer’s patients as cognition begins to decline, it becomes harder for people with dementia to time their steps. According to the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation (2021), “People who suffer from dementia related disease will eventually develop an unsteady gait, hardly lifting their feet. Instead, they will develop a shuffle and this creates a higher risk of falling.”

Poor foot health and cognitive impairment are two prominent risk factors for falls in patients with AD. Allali (2016) stated, “Cognitive impairment has been identified as a risk factor for falls in aging.3,4 Impaired executive function, but not memory impairment, has been associated with increased prevalence of falls in healthy older adults.3 Dementia is considered an independent risk factor for falling in older adults.5,6 Older adults with dementia fall 2 to 3 times more than cognitively healthy older adults.”

Fall risk assessments are often performed using the 5XSTS test, which evaluates the balance and leg strength of an elderly patient moving from sit to stand as many times as they can safely stand within 30 seconds. That amount is then compared to the average in that age group.

 

Sarcopenia and Alzheimer’s Disease

UltraComfort America UC562 Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner While staff-supported interventions and exercise interventions are highly recommended by doctors, balance also plays a role in fall prevention. Another risk factor affecting balance for AD patients is sarcopenia. According to the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, “More severe sarcopenia at baseline was associated with a higher risk of incident AD and a faster rate of cognitive decline.” Sarcopenia is a natural occurrence in the elderly, it is skeletal muscle loss and it affects balance and gait in the elderly. Clinically defined, Sarcopenia is “a syndrome characterized by progressive and generalized loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength and it is strictly correlated with physical disability, poor quality of life and death.” Santilli, (2014). Sarcopenia, coupled with cognitive impairment, present a very high risk factor for falls. 

 Sarcopenia can make the sit-to-stand transition very difficult for an elderly patient. UltraComfort power lift recliners are designed to lift a person gently to their feet while simultaneously opening the backrest, so its occupant doesn’t feel pushed or forced out of the chair. It allows individuals to exit the chair when they are ready, giving them time to find their balance and footing. UltraComfort lift chairs not only provide support for elderly patients during the sit-to-stand transition, but they provide relief to caregivers who would otherwise have to rely on their own strength to give lift assistance.

At UltraComfort, we understand how challenging caring for an Alzheimer’s patient can be and we hope this post has helped provide important information to aid in care and to be on the lookout for other symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s. Our mission is to create the most innovative products for ultimate comfort and independence for you and your family. That’s why we offer such a wide range of power lift recliner sizes and stylesto help you find the perfect chair. 

 

 

Resources:

https://www.cdc.gov/aging/aginginfo/alzheimers.htm

https://www.alzinfo.org/treatment-care/blogs/2014/01/risk-falling-increases-dementia/

https://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org/content/53/2/474

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5366266/#:~:text=Cognitive%20impairment%20has%20been%20identified,factor%20for%20falls%20in%20aging.&text=Impaired%20executive%20function%2C%20but%20not,falls%20in%20healthy%20older%20adults.&text=Dementia%20is%20considered%20an%20independent%20risk%20factor%20for%20falling%20in%20older%20adults.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4269139/#:~:text=Sarcopenia%20is%20a%20condition%20characterized,skeletal%20muscle%20mass%20and%20function.https://agsjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jgs.17206?af=R

https://www.cdc.gov/steadi/pdf/STEADI-Assessment-30Sec-508.pdf

 

 

How An UltraComfort Lift Chair Aides Those with Neuropathy

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Man relaxing in an UltraComfort Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner UC562

Written By: Aline Browning

If you or someone you love is suffering from neuropathy, an UltraComfort power lift recliner is the best choice to aide in treatment and relief. 

According to a Google review, Amy H. wrote, “This chair has helped my mother-in-law immensely as her neuropathy has made it hard for her to use her feet/legs. Using the lift component has made it much easier for her to get out of the chair when she needs to. I also love how the controller has a USB port at the top so she can charge her devices right there – genius since her mobility is so limited. The chair is also sized correctly for her…Highly recommend this product.” 

Neuropathy is a form of nerve damage that causes symptoms such as numbness, muscle weakness, burning and tingling in the hands and feet, and loss of balance. Patients with peripheral neuropathy lose sensation in their feet, making them more prone to injury. UC San Diego Health stated,” Loss of sensation makes falls much more likely.” Loss of sensation is usually precluded by tremendous nerve pain and tingling. According to the Cleveland Clinic, “It is estimated that around 60%-70% of individuals with Diabetes also have peripheral neuropathy. About 25%-30% of Americans are estimated to have it.”

The main obstacle that neuropathy presents is loss of balance, which can lead to falls and broken bones. “In a study of more than 500 women with chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN), 45% reported numbness in their hands and feet. These women had an altered gait pattern and were twice as likely to fall,” according to an article by the National Cancer Institute. 

Man lifting out of an UltraComfort Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner UC562

The sit-to-stand transition is seen as one of the most physically demanding motor functions needed to maintain our independence and that motor function can be impeded by the muscle weakness associated with peripheral neuropathy which can increase the risk for falling. Richard Bohanon from the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Agriculture stated, “The maneuver is relatively demanding from a neuromuscular perspective) and is affected negatively by age and pathology.

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Symptoms can include: Numbness or reduced ability to feel pain or temperature changes

  • Tingling or burning feeling
  • Sharp pains or cramps
  • Muscle weakness
  • Extreme sensitivity to touch — for some people, even a bedsheet’s weight can be painful
  • Serious foot problems, such as ulcers, infections, and bone and joint damage

 

UltraComfort’s lift chairs are specially made to have the backrest open slowly as the chair rises to provide supportive lift assistance that allows the user to gently exit the chair when they are ready.

As neuropathy progresses, wound care is also inevitable as patients have an increased risk for neuropathic ulcers and broken bones from toe-stubbing and falls. Diabetes is not the only cause of peripheral neuropathy. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Health conditions that cause peripheral neuropathy can include:

  • Autoimmune diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome, Guillain-Barre syndrome, vasculitis, etc.
  • Infections
  • Inherited disorders
  • Tumors
  • Bone Marrow disorders
  • Hypothyroidism

Due to nerve damage, many individuals living with peripheral neuropathy often are unable to tell when they have injured their foot be it a broken toe stubbed on a coffee table or a cut from a sharp object. Some aren’t able to tell until they are already dealing with an infection. It is highly recommended by the medical professionals at the Cleveland Clinic that, “people living with diabetes (or their caregivers) inspect their feet daily for infections and wounds and never go barefoot.” 

Woman putting a blanket on Man sleeping in an UltraComfort Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner UC562

Another way UltraComfort 5-Zone Power Lift Recliners with our patented Eclipse positioning  can benefit the caregiver and patient alike is providing better accessibility to the feet to aid in wound care. Neuropathic ulcers can generally occur under the bottom of the feet and debridement techniques are often recommended to treat them. This positioning offers a safe and comfortable means for the caregiver to access and treat the ulcers. While the average lift chair footboard may raise to approximately 21-22” and generally run parallel to the floor, the 5th zone that activates Eclipse positioning raises the front of the chair, which puts the feet at an angle that is highly visible and accessible.

According to Mizisin, Department of Pathology (Neuropathology), University of California, “Nerve edema is a common response to the nerve injury seen in many peripheral neuropathies and is an important component of Wallerian degeneration.” Edema is swelling caused by a build-up of fluids around the nerves. In this case, a doctor may recommend a variety of mechanical treatments such as leg elevation, massage, compression, movement, and other measures. For leg elevation, UltraComfort lift chairs offer the most ergonomic positions to comfortably raise the feet above the heart. Be sure to discuss with your doctor which options are right for you.

UltraComfort power lift recliners with 5-Zone Technology make regular foot inspections much easier for caregivers because their exclusively patented positioning technology provides a 15° ergonomic tilt after the footboard is raised, making feet visible and accessible for inspection and for dressing wounds. With so many positioning possibilities, it can be a great tool to ease the physical strain of being a caregiver and provide a useful station to offer care such as toenail trimming, foot moisturizing, or other recommended care. Whether you require leg elevation for foot inspection, or for longer use like elevation for drainage, UltraComfort power lift recliners offer better leg elevation than any other power lift recliner around. Our 5-Zone models contain five Comfort Zones so that you can reposition easily for lasting comfort.

These are just a few ways that lift chairs can help make life easier for those suffering from the long-term effects of peripheral neuropathy. By providing assistance with balance, relief of pressure points, and an ergonomic aid for wound care associated with neuropathic ulcers, UltraComfort lift chairs can enrich the lifestyles of their owners.

 

 

 

For more resources related to foot care and neuropathic ulcers please visit:

https://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/footcare/prevention

To find support groups in your area, you can email the Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy:

info@tffpn.org

 

 

https://www.cancer.gov/news-events/cancer-currents-blog/2016/peripheral-neuropathy-falls

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/14737-neuropathy#:~:text=About%208%25%20of%20adults%20over,)%2C%20and%20heavy%20alcohol%20use.

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/17169-foot-and-toe-ulcers

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2195637/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4395748/

https://myhealth.ucsd.edu/3,40378

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetic-neuropathy/symptoms-causes/syc-20371580#:~:text=Proximal%20neuropathy%20may%20include%3A,rising%20from%20a%20sitting%20position

 

Image Credit:

https://unsplash.com/photos/5OXE3KjDEfI?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditShareLink

https://unsplash.com/photos/J1trUf0Lj3Q?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditShareLink

https://unsplash.com/photos/UOYv29Mn9aM?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditShareLink

https://unsplash.com/photos/VUOiQW4OeLI?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditShareLink

 

UltraComfort Welcomes Third-Generation Family Members to Team

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Richard Golden, Jr. and Alyssa Golden with their father, Rich Golden, Sr.

Old Forge, PA – The world’s leading manufacturer of power lift recliners is proud to announce the addition of two third-generation Golden family members to the team. Richard Golden, Jr., and Alyssa Golden joined UltraComfort America, a family-owned and operated business providing quality power lift recliners to the furniture industry for over 13 years. UltraComfort is the furniture division of Golden Technologies which has been providing quality products to the durable medical equipment industry for over 35 years.

“When my father, Robert Golden, and his business partner, Fred Kiwak, started Golden Technologies is a garage over three decades ago, we never thought we would grow to become the largest manufacturer in the USA and abroad of power lift recliners to the furniture industry. Having my two oldest children – Richard, Jr., and Alyssa – join our company is truly an amazing and extremely proud feeling. Both of them are valuable assets to the organization. We look forward to all of their contributions in the years to come,” said Rich Golden, President & CEO of UltraComfort. “I’m excited for them to work with our incredible employees and our dedicated retailers, for which I am grateful for each day,” he added.

Richard Golden Jr.Richard Golden, Jr., has been named Cost Accountant in the Finance Department and is responsible for assessing business expenses and preparing budget plans for UltraComfort. His duties include reviewing financial records, researching the market rate for key business costs, and adjusting the company ledger to accurately reflect financial performance. In his new role, Richard will collaborate with other accountants and financial staff in the company to provide support to executives and department heads who establish goals and budgets for the organization.

“I’m very proud to be joining the team as a third-generation Golden. It is truly a privilege to be able to work with such a talented and hardworking group of individuals in every single department company-wide,” said Richard. “What a great feeling it is knowing firsthand that the products we provide help others and make such a positive impact on the lives of so many people who need them,” he added.

Richard joined the team after gaining several years of experience in accounting in Philadelphia, PA. He served as Senior Accountant at DF Young, Inc., an international shipping and logistics company. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and a Master of Business Administration degree in Finance from Saint Joseph’s University. In addition, he worked at UltraComfort’s distribution center while attending college and completed an internship in the Finance Department.

Alyssa Golden was named Content Coordinator in the Marketing Department, Alyssa Goldenhaving previously served as Marketing Assistant on the team. She is responsible for leading the ongoing strategy to develop written and video content for social media and other digital marketing platforms. Delivering engaging content is more important than ever to help grow UltraComfort’s following on multiple social media channels to drive traffic to the company website and build overall brand awareness of all product lines. Alyssa also completed an internship in the Marketing Department while attending college. She is the first third-generation Golden to work at the family-owned business.

“I feel very proud to be an active part of our family business. My brother Richie and I are excited to bring new ideas to the table and learn all aspects of the company as well as the furniture industry. We look up to our Dad more than anything, and he’s raised us to always stay humble, be driven, and treat others the way we want to be treated,” said Alyssa.

Before joining UltraComfort, Alyssa served as a Marketing Intern at Universal Music Group in Philadelphia, PA. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business from Berklee College of Music and a master’s degree in Communication from Drexel University. Alyssa is also a freelance Event Vocalist performing live locally and nationally at professional sporting events.

 

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About UltraComfort America

 

UltraComfort America is the retail furniture division of the world’s largest power lift chair manufacturer. A family-owned, family-operated business headquartered in Northeastern Pennsylvania, UltraComfort America is a true American manufacturer offering retailers lift and wellness recliners that exceed industry standards for design, components and warranties.

 

Suddenly Gaining Weight? It Could Be Hypothyroidism

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Weighing on a Scale Dramatic Weight Gain Could be a Sign of Hypothyroidism

Written By: Aline Browning

 

The Emotional Drain of Dramatic Weight Gain

Dramatic weight gain can be emotionally crushing. It’s made me doubt my self worth, causes physical pain, and has even been a financial burden when I’ve had to buy all new clothes. When I turned 40, I began to struggle with weakness and fatigue that was first thought to be anemia.The diagnosis was updated after some testing a few months later and I was told I had Hypothyroidism.

Ali Browning 2019The weight gain started soon after that and while I was used to fluctuating by a few pounds, this was different because my whole shape was changing quickly. I wasn’t just gaining weight in problem areas, everything was getting bigger. Even pulling a sweater over my shoulders felt different. I was very fit in my 20s and 30s. I weighed 122 pounds. I ran 2.5 miles on an elliptical machine 3-4 days a week, I lifted weights, did resistance training, and wore extra small-sized clothes. My weight fluctuated by a few pounds, but I was always under 130 lbs. Then I received my diagnosis two years ago. I am now at 167 lbs. and climbing.

  In two years I have had to have four wardrobe changes and I now wear large-sized clothing and frankly, that makes me sad at least 20 times a day. Every time I attempt to button my coat, lift something heavy, or try on new clothing, I feel like I am losing more and more of myself. To me, it seems to be happening incredibly fast. It’s like I’m watching a photograph of myself just blur before my eyes. To spectators, it may seem like the answer is to make lifestyle changes and get back in shape, but that is a leaf that doesn’t turn over so easily when you have Hypothyroidism. 

Hypothyroid weight gain isn’t caused by fat, but by enlargement and softening of muscle mass, so burning it off is impossible. I try to make lighthearted jokes about how I’m “hulking” out of my clothes but at the end of the day, it really still just hurts to think about my body changing this way. I feel powerless over it.

Aline Browning with UltraComfort America

 

One of the reasons it is so difficult to “attack” the progression of hypothyroidism is because there is a plethora of underlying autoimmune diseases that may be causing it. Getting to the bottom of the cause of one’s hypothyroidism can take as long it takes to diagnose systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). “On average it takes 6 years to diagnose SLE”, Lupus.org (2021) which translates to roughly 6 years of unchecked damage to the body caused by either the underlying condition or the hypothyroidism. 

I was extremely crushed to receive the diagnosis, but not surprised, as thyroid disease is common in the women in my family. My younger sister was diagnosed with Graves disease about eight years ago and she has struggled terribly through her symptoms. She endured drastic weight loss, muscle weakness, headaches, and the worst were her bulging, ulcerated eyes. I was so distraught over her symptoms that I didn’t think about the possibility of me having a thyroid disorder, too. 

 

Thyroid Disease In Women

Thyroid disease is predominantly gender specific and mostly impacts women. According to Dr. Klein from the American Heart Association (2007), “Current estimates suggest that it affects as many as 9% to 15% of the adult female population and a smaller percentage of adult males.” Lo and behold, I found myself in the ranks of that statistic.

“Virtually all studies report higher prevalence rates for either overt or subclinical hypothyroidism in women with advancing age.” According to Dr. Morganti from National Center for Biotechnology Information, “epidemiological data from the aging population confirms that men are less affected by thyroid disease than women.”

Unfortunately, ] but there are many other complications that arise from this disorder that many might not know about. Familiarizing yourself with some of the more serious and common complications can help you prepare and to source tools and knowledge that will help you combat its effects. Getting a power lift recliner, for example, can enhance your mobility during a time when mobility is threatened by Hypothyroidism and the autoimmune diseases that cause it. 

 According to the Mayo Clinic (2021), “Symptoms may include fatigue, increased sensitivity to cold, weight gain, muscle weakness, muscle aches, muscle tenderness and stiffness, and depression among others.” Hypothyroidism is a disease that impedes your mobility over time and causes musculoskeletal weakness.

 

Power Lift Recliners Can Help with Balance Issues

UltraComfort America UC562 Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner

Hypothyroid myopathy is a common complication of hypothyroidism that reportedly affects “almost 80 percent of patients with hypothyroidism. Patients with severe or untreated hypothyroidism can develop significant muscle disease leading to severe functional limitations.” Fariduddin, (2021). 

UltraComfort power lift recliners provide supportive and ergonomic lift assistance that will help you carefully stand to your feet. If muscle responses are slower, it can impact an individual’s balance which is especially true with elderly patients. “The most common symptoms include weakness around the hips and sometimes the shoulders, and a slowing of reflexes. Some people also experience muscle stiffness and painful muscle cramps.” Muscular Dystrophy Association, (2021). 

 

Hypothyroidism and Circulatory Complications

Hypothyroidism can affect cardiac contractions the same way it affects type 2 muscle fiber contraction, which can result in cardiovascular complications. According to the American Thyroid Association, “symptoms may include slowing of the heart rate, constriction of the blood vessels and increased blood pressure, retention of fluid and edema and an increase in cholesterol levels. Severe cases of hypothyroidism can cause heart failure and death.”

Hypothyroid myopathy is a common complication of hypothyroidism that reportedly affects “almost 80 percent of patients with hypothyroidism. Patients with severe or untreated hypothyroidism can develop significant muscle disease leading to severe functional limitations.” Fariduddin, The condition of the muscles themselves are characterized by, “swollen and pale muscle tissue with loss of striations and increased separation between the muscle fibers due to mucinous depositions. Type I muscle fiber hypertrophy, type 2 muscle fiber atrophy.” Fariduddin, (2021) This condition causes your muscles to contract more slowly and can exacerbate a patient’s risk for falls when standing.

Thyroid Stimulating Hormones (TSH) is thought to reverse the adverse effects of hypothyroidism on the cardiovascular system. Truthfully, with treatment, there is a fine line to walk as over-treatment can be equally detrimental. “Per Somwary et al., 20% of patients with hypothyroidism may be over-treated during (hormone) replacement therapy leading to increased risk of atrial fibrillation, especially among the elderly. Despite the improvement in both symptoms and cardiac contractility, close observation is needed when starting thyroid hormonal therapy, particularly in the elderly and in those with known coronary ischemia.” Francois, (2020).

“Having hypothyroidism can change the viscosity of the blood, which can lead to increased systemic vascular resistance (SVR), and SVR is the pressure that regulates our blood flow. Now with decreased cardiac output and venous blood struggling to return to the heart, the chance for inflammation has greatly increased through the shedding of blood cell waste.” Klein (2007) Leg elevation can help to reduce some of this blood cell waste by making it easier for blood oxygen to reach the brain. UltraComfort power lift recliners offer leg elevation with infinite positioning, so you can adjust your leg elevation for comfort while encouraging improved circulation. 

 

You Owe it to Your Body to Find Out What is Causing Your Hypothyroidism

When I started my research for this blog post, I hadn’t been educated on the connection between autoimmune disease and Hypothyroidism. I just assumed that a few lifestyle choices would get me back on track. At that point, I was forced to face a detail that I have been ignoring for about a year now. I have had increasing severity in the arthritis in my neck and about six other joints in my body. Sometimes a simple gesture like shaking my head “no” will cause my neck to become stuck. It is painful, not to mention really socially awkward. It is also a detail that I have ignored for too long. So, I had a hearty tearful moment at my desk and then I called my doctor to set up testing for RA. 

He is ordering testing for systemic lupus eurythmatosus  (SLE) as well because autoimmune diseases are imposter diseases that are difficult to diagnose. He didn’t hesitate to set up the tests and he was very forthcoming when he told me that it may take years to confirm. I want to start the process now that I know that time is not on my side with diagnosing the autoimmune disease. I know that there are treatments and lifestyle changes that can reduce or slow the progression of this condition, but that can’t be achieved until I know which disease is causing it. I know one thing for sure, I work and live in close proximity to the world’s leading lift chair manufacturer so as my mobility needs change, I’ll have some amazing accessibility options and you have those options, too. I encourage you to find an UltraComfort retailer near you to start sourcing the tools you need to help make every day of your life easier and more comfortable.

 

UltraComfort America 5-Zone Power Lift Chair Recliners with Patented Eclipse Technology

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK519513/

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hypothyroidism/symptoms-causes/syc-20350284

https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.106.678326

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16760635/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7331968/

https://www.thyroid.org/patient-thyroid-information/ct-for-patients/february-2020/vol-13-issue-2-p-3-4/

 

https://unsplash.com/photos/ neonbrand-5ddH9Y2accI-unsplash

 

https://unsplash.com/photos/ cdc-7uSvaBY69d0-unsplash

https://unsplash.com/photos/ jon-flobrant-_r19nfvS3wY-unsplash

 

https://unsplash.com/photos/ ales-maze-aDYBhg-4htc-unsplash

 

Delicious Juicy Thanksgiving Turkey Brine Recipe

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UltraComfort Juicy Thanksgiving Turkey Brine Recipe

If you’re looking for a delicious, juicy turkey recipe, this tried and true Turkey Brine Recipe is a Thanksgiving must!

Brine Ingredients:

1/4 cup kosher salt per 1 liter of water/cider needed to cover turkey (Most containers that are the size of the turkey will require 7L+ of water)

Apple cider, ratio should be 100-150 mL per 1 liter of water

15-20g brown sugar per 1 liter of water

1/4 cup Whole allspice for 7L of brine

1/4 cup Whole black peppercorns

1/4 cup Dried cranberries

1/2 cup Garlic, crushed

1/2 cup shallots, coarsley chopped

1/2 cup onions, coarsley chopped

(Amounts for ingredients other than salt and brown sugar do not have to be exact. Increase/decrease other ingredients according to amount of brine liquid.)

Soak turkey for 48 hours

*Optional: to bring out the flavors better, bring 1-2 liters of water to a boil and then add the brine ingredients. Turn off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes, cool and then add back to the rest of the brining liquid.

Lightly pat turkey dry when ready to cook. Do not stuff with any bread or absorbent ingredients. Roasting for 12-14 lb. turkey is about 2-2 1/2 hours at 350 degrees F in oven. 325 degrees in convection oven. Place a stick of butter on top of turkey for additional basting liquid. Baste turkey every 15 minutes. Turkey is done when internal temperature is 145-150 degrees F. Dark meat regions may be a little underdone depending on the size of the turkey. Remove from breast and cook legs further if needed.

How To Help Manage Chronic Pain

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Woman Reclining in UltraComfort UC682 Estrella Power Lift Chair Recliner

Written By: Aline Browning

“Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.” – Helen Keller

According to Johns Hopkins Medicine (2021), “Nearly 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain, which is more than those who have diabetes, heart disease, and cancer combined.” The most commonly reported chronic pain in adults is low back pain, followed by knee pain, and chronic migraines. Fortunately, UltraComfort’s Comfort Zone Power Lift Recliners have patented positioning technology designed to help alleviate body aches and pains. 

Pregnant Woman with Low Back Pain

Low back pain can be caused by Sciatica, labor-related injury, Arthritis, Spina Bifida,or Spinal Stenosis, and many other reasons. Spinal Stenosis is a condition that becomes increasingly common with age. “Over time, the cumulative effects of gravity bring the vertebrae closer together, and the discs also tend to dry out and become thinner. With less cushioning between them, the vertebrae rub against one another, causing arthritis. Arthritic bone deposits can narrow the channels through which nerves pass, putting pressure on them and producing pain.” Harvard Health Publishing (2019).

Selfcare is a common treatment for Spinal Stenosis according to the Mayfield Clinic,  “When lying on your back a pillow support should be utilized under the knees. Remember a pillow should support the neck not the head.” Furthermore their recommendations for proper sleeping posture are, “using correct posture and keeping your spine in alignment are the most important things you can do for your back. The lower back bears most of your weight, so proper alignment of this area can prevent injury to your vertebrae, discs, and other portions of your spine.”

UltraComfort power lift recliners with 4 and 5 Comfort Zones offer articulating headrest and lumbar support that can be easily adjusted to offer ideal support for your spine as well as leg elevation to alleviate pressure on the lumbar. 

“Knee pain is the second most common cause of chronic pain” Man with Knee Painamong adults in the U.S. according to Classic Rehabilitation, Inc. Often patients find themselves seeking a surgical remedy such as knee replacement. UltraComfort power lift recliners are luxurious and comfortable, offering support during a vulnerable time. They help patients and caregivers with lift assistance, balance, and help keep the leg raised above the heart, which may help with swelling.

According to Dr. Omoigui, from his medical journal on The Biochemical Origin of Pain, “Another leading cause of pain is inflammation and particularly Edema. Edema can happen from a weakening in the valves of the veins in the legs (a condition called venous insufficiency). This problem makes it hard for the veins to push blood back up to the heart, and leads to varicose veins and a buildup of fluid in the legs.” Cleveland Clinic, (2021). They also recommend, “Keeping your legs elevated above the level of the heart” as a method to reduce swelling. Our StellarComfort power lift recliners offer the Trendelenburg position, which positions the legs just above the level of the heart to achieve this recommended leg elevation.

Patients suffering from the symptoms of Edema can also be vulnerable to pressure sores. UltraComfort power lift recliners allow individuals to change positions frequently and we offer a large variety of fabrics that are both breathable and temperature neutral such as our exclusive UltraPlush Brisa fabrics. This durable fabric is softer to the touch than leather and has a porous surface that allows airflow to the skin.

Varicose veins are another form of chronic pain that can happen, mostly in the legs. According to the Mayo Clinic (2021), “Varicose veins are twisted, enlarged veins. Any superficial vein may become varicosed, but the veins most commonly affected are those in your legs. That’s because standing and walking upright increases the pressure in the veins of your lower body.” Varicose veins can cause burning and cramping sensations in the legs. This aching, throbbing, and swelling can also be accompanied by discoloration. The Mayo Clinic (2021) recommends, “Self-care—such as exercises, elevating your legs or even wearing compression stockings,” as a method to help prevent them from becoming worse.

The causes of chronic pain can vary considerably from injury-related chronic pain, to chronic pain caused by inflammation, to pain caused by exposure to environmental factors. In the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) defined pain as, “An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage.”

Woman Sitting in UltraComfort UC682 Estrella Power Lift Chair ReclinerWe try to measure and convey our pain in units, scales from 1 to 10, and even the Wong-Baker Pain Scale, which is a 0-10 scale composed of various facial expressions meant to communicate the level of pain an individual is experiencing. One thing is for sure, no matter how we try to communicate to others how we feel, at the time it very much feels like we are shouldering the burden of chronic pain alone. Pain, while subjective, as it happens to us on an individual basis, is also universal. It causes us to feel distressed or not like ourselves and we all do what we can to try to function normally despite our discomfort. UltraComfort power lift chairs can help you to retain some of the comfort and mobility that you had before this pain came into your life and will still prove to be a wonderful addition to your home long after the pain has passed.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://philosiblog.com/2012/06/27/although-the-world-is-full-of-suffering-it-is-also-full-of-the-overcoming-of-it/

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/stories/september_pain_awareness_month.html

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/12564-edema

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5902252/

https://www.health.harvard.edu/pain/when-to-get-help-for-low-back-pain

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/varicose-veins/symptoms-causes/syc-20350643

https://wongbakerfaces.org/

https://www.classicrehabilitation.com/blog/knee-pain-statistics-and-causes/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2771434/

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/17499-spinal-stenosis

https://mayfieldclinic.com/pe-posture.htm

 

 

The Importance of an Ergonomic Chair

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UltraComfort Comfort Zone Power Lift Chair Recliners

Written By: Jackie Caraballo and Aline Browning

If you’re like most people, when you reach your 30s your body starts to lose its youthfulness and you begin to realize the importance of ergonomic support and good posture. I knew my posture wasn’t the greatest, but after seeing a physical therapist for the first time for back pain, I realized just how important good posture and ergonomic furniture is to help relieve and prevent future aches and pains. 

Although you may not need major pain-relieving methods now, make sure you’re treating your body right to avoid problems in the future. Think about how many hours of your life have been spent sitting. One in four American adults sit for more than eight hours a day, according to federal research from investigators at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Woman Suffering from Back Pain

Spine-Health reports that millions of people are sitting in badly designed chairs or in a position that can cause chronic back pain and undue suffering. “Ergonomics is about designing for our physiology. Whether you are buying an ergonomic chair to support your back or taking steps to improve your posture, knowing proper techniques and proper chair design will help you improve your back’s health.”

UltraComfort Power Lift Recliners feature up to five zones of ergonomic and patented wellness positioning to support and rejuvenate your whole body. Each Comfort Zone can be adjusted independently to find your perfectly unique supportive position by using our exclusive AutoDrive hand control

 

UltraComfort AutoDrive Hand Control with Five Zones of Comfort

Zone Five features our exclusive Eclipse Technology. This patented tilting motion provides a feeling of weightlessness beyond zero gravity and offers even more positioning options that aren’t available with other recliners. Encourage circulation by relaxing with your legs elevated or promote the release of muscle tension and joint pain in a comforting neutral position. Eclipse lift recliners offer the greatest array of rejuvenating positions to find the perfect angle for ultimate comfort and relaxation.

Zone Four focuses on lumbar support. The custom and firm support of the adjustable lumbar can take pressure off your spine while giving your back muscles the chance to rest and rejuvenate. 

Zone Three supports your head placement with an adjustable headrest, allowing for tension to be released from your neck and shoulders, while encouraging the natural shape of your spine. 

Zone Two supports the upper body. The independent movement of the backrest allows stress and strain to be released from your upper body by offering adjustable support for your back and shoulders. 

Zone One supports the lower body and features four-way motion in the seat, which helps provide relief to muscle and joint pain by placing your lower body in a supported ergonomic position. 

UltraComfort America Eclipse UC562 Artemis Power Lift Chair Recliner

Don’t procrastinate on your health! As you grow older, postural control is weakened by a flexed posture, or a posture where the head protrudes forward. According to De Groot (2014), “A flexed posture (FP) is characterized by protrusion of the head and an increased thoracic kyphosis (TK), which may be caused by osteoporotic vertebral fractures (VFs). These impairments may affect motor function, and consequently increase the risk of falling and fractures.”

Posture affects so much more than our overall comfort. As we age, our posture plays a more governing role over our balance. Flexed posturing can be especially challenging for men because they have a higher center gravity so FP can exacerbate balance issues. A study by Kado (2007), supported this higher prevalence of falls in men concluding, “Moderate hyperkyphotic posture may signify an easily identifiable independent risk factor for injurious falls in older men, with the association being less pronounced in older women.”

Being conscious about your posture now and providing proper support and alignment for your spine earlier on, may reduce the challenges associated with balance issues later on. An article by the American Posture Institute (2021) stated, “Postural distortion patterns do not develop overnight. This comes from our daily habits. Remaining unaware of your posture and allowing yourself to be in bad posture throughout your day causes compensation in your spine. These changes are seen through incorrect posture.”

Choose all five zones with our Ultracomfort power lift recliners with Eclipse technology or find your perfect-fitting chair in a range of sizes with our Custom-Sizing Collection

UltraComfort UC559 Polaris Power Lift Chair Recliner

We recommend visiting a furniture store near you using our retailer locator to sit in and try out each chair to find your perfect fit. All UltraComfort chairs can be custom built in the color and style of your choosing, most made right here in the USA in Old Forge, Pennsylvania. Find the chair of your dreams–you deserve it! 

 

https://time.com/5459319/americans-sit-too-much/

https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/ergonomics

 

How An UltraComfort Lift Chair Can Help Alleviate Arthritis Pain

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Joan Garrison in an UltraComfort America Power Lift Chair Recliner in Trendelenburg Position To Elevate Feet Above Heart

Written By: Aline Browning and Jackie Caraballo

Are you or someone you love suffering from arthritis? According to the CDC, this extremely painful and often debilitating disease affects 23% of all adults in the U.S. That’s over 54 million people who have arthritis. Of those, about 24 million adults are limited in their activities from arthritis. 

Arthritis attacks the joints and causes pain and inflammation. According to the Arthritis Foundation, the condition can affect balance, cause many sleep disturbances, and it can even change your arteries. Particularly, patients with rheumatoid arthritis have an increased risk of having a heart attack and for developing atherosclerosis.

Because all of our body’s systems are so interconnected and interdependent, UltraComfort power lift recliners can offer several benefits to help you battle inflammation caused by arthritis and provide reliable lift assistance when transitioning from sitting to standing. According to Stanmore (2013), “Adults with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have an increased risk of falls. Suggested reasons for this include impaired muscle strength, postural instability, fatigue, joint pain, and reduced functioning.“

Joan Garrison Relaxing in an UltraComfort America Power Lift Chair Recliner To Help Relieve Arthritis

Improving circulation is another benefit that UltraComfort lift chairs provide as inflammation can harden arteries much faster than patients who don’t suffer from arthritis. “For dactylitis and enthesitis, start with the old-but-good RICE treatment,” says Yolanda Ragland, DPM, a podiatrist and founder of Fix Your Feet. “Rest, ice, compression, and elevation are the first line of defense for any inflammatory process, including arthritis,” she explains. UltraComfort Zero Gravity lift chairs and power lift recliners with patented positioning technology provide leg elevation with a gentle, supportive bend at the knee that allow individuals to raise their feet slightly above the heart.

Joan Garrison, 78 years old, Joan Garrison in an UltraComfort America Power Lift Chair Recliner To Help Relieve Arthritisabsolutely loves her UltraComfort lift chair. “It has given me great joy and comfort from the very first day. It is easy to operate, very comfortable and helps ease my arthritis.There are so many different comfortable positions. Sometimes I raise my legs and sometimes I lower them, depending on where I have pain. With my age and arthritis, it’s so nice to just push a button to find the perfect comfortable position. It’s a gem and a blessing to have. I am also due for knee surgery and I know the lift will be helpful getting in and out of the chair.”

Joan Garrison Lifting in an UltraComfort America Power Lift Chair ReclinerAnother challenge for those suffering with arthritis is pain-related insomnia. Trouble sleeping or falling asleep can have a dramatic impact on the ability to heal optimally. Additionally, if we are dehydrated during the night, it can create more friction in the joints because of uric acid deposits. “Uric acid can build up, forming sharp, needlelike urate crystals in a joint or surrounding tissue that causes pain.” Mayo Clinic (2021) UltraComfort power lift recliners provide infinite positioning and are able to support the needs of patients with arthritis who need to adjust sleep positions frequently without the stationary limitations of a wedge pillow. 

If you or your loved one also want to experience the amazing full-body rejuvenation and relief of a UltraComfort power lift chair, visit ultracomfort.com/retailers to find a retailer near you to try one out in person. 

 

Sources: 

https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/publications/factsheets/arthritis.htm#:~:text=Fast%20Facts,arthritis%20report%20severe%20joint%20pain. 

https://www.arthritis.org/health-wellness/about-arthritis/related-conditions/other-diseases/rheumatoid-arthritis-heart-disease

https://creakyjoints.org/living-with-arthritis/podiatrist-tips-for-managing-arthritis/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3881513/#:~:text=Adults%20with%20rheumatoid%20arthritis%20(RA)%20have%20an%20increased%20risk%20of,mass%20(5%E2%80%936)

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/gout/symptoms-causes/syc-20372897#:~:text=But%20sometimes%20either%20your%20body,cause%20pain%2C%20inflammation%20and%20swelling.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5429790/#:~:text=In%20rheumatoid%20arthritis%20(RA)%2C,more%20high%2Drisk%20plaque%20phenotype.