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Recliner chairs?

happyHBmomhhappyHBmom Posts: 2,070
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Chronic Pain
I see a lot of you writing about recliner chairs. Do you use special anti-gravity chairs? Or just recliners?

Do you use special mattresses?

I've been putting more effort into making myself comfortable lately. Thought I'd get some input :) Lately it's been memory foam pillows. I got a 4" memory foam coccyx pillow the other day. I love that thing!


  • I've been wondering about this as well. Is the recliner good just for lower back or also cervical?

    I was fine after my surgery with just the couch and some pillows. I don't really have a place in my house for a recliner but am wondering if this is going to be a must have in the future.
  • first let me say that we can get the zero gravity recliner over here in the uk .but i would not if i were you .what a person with a back problem need is a rise and recliner electrical recliner and i can recommend the celebrity {Hampton} recliner that's i one that i am on now .i could not function at all without my recliner ..i have had many over the years but this is the best ,laz e boy were good but not any more i have one in the other room and its falling to bit after only 3 years .i payed one thousand pounds for my celebrity and its money well spent .i also payed over one thousand for the laz e boy and that's not even electric!!
    we have tried the tempur full memory foam but we both found it too hard and i could not get of a flat bed i should imagine that the tempur mattress on an electrical base would be ok
    we have twin electrical adjustable beds made by VELDA tempurs rival ! and the mattresses are memory foam and sprung ..and as you all know i don't sleep too well its not down to the bed ..the bed is extremely comfy and well built .if you are in the uk you can get the VELDA PRO FLEX 30 from sleep masters under sleepmasters own name {as i did } and save yourself over one thousand pounds .if anyone want any info pm me {UK only} sorry
    tony x
  • I usually just lay in bed propped up with a lot of pillows and my heating pad.
  • I, too, have read so many posts about recliners that I am convinced I should have one! So many times I have been to regular stores and I even went to a few medical stores and tried every size and type of recliner I could find and not one was comfortable in any position. I tend to be alot like Goldilocks with chairs,beds and cars these days!LOL! Several times I paid for it dearly with pain. So for now, I've given up...my regular chair with pillows around me and my feet touch the floor or laying flat with a pillow are the answer for me. Now my dad just had lumbar surgery and loves the recliner he bought for his recovery!He spent a fortune and I was worried he wouldn't be able to use it but he loves it! I guess it's a matter of your body frame, where you hurt, which nerves, etc.

    My advice would be to go try them first. Go to one or two places at a time so you don't wear yourself out.That way you can figure out what size feels best, they really do have small,med and large LOL!If I ever do find a recliner I think I would pay the extra money to get one with power that lifts, reclines so I'd be set for life! Besides even now I could never do a manuel one!

    Good luck! Let us know if you find one that works for you!

  • I think I would need the gravity chair. A recliner would be too deep, I need more support. I actually had one and ended up having charity come take it away :(
  • I have a recliner and both ends of my couch recline as well. The one important thing I can say about buying a recliner is make sure when the foot part comes up it is connected to the seat so it supports all of your legs not just a foot support raises. I also have the high back couch with the seat being long. I have rather lengthy legs so when i sit i want to be supported from my knees all the way up to my head. I am not tall per say just long legged. Same theory applies with my office chair. So whenever i am sitting I am fully supported. The other thing is sense I am long legged all of my furniture is taller, not so far to go down to sit down. Now my bed has a feather bed on top of the mattress just what I like, but it is also a high bed so getting in and out of it is rather easy. The pillow thing I have purchased every firmness and type that is possible. One may work one night but not the next night. But my best sleeping position is on one side with one pillow to support the other arm and then one flat one between the knees and one behind me. Now that will all change by morning it is just a starting point. I typically sleep in two hour intervals and need to get up and move around be it just a walk in another room or around the bed but i have to get out of that position.
  • Kris-NY said:
    I've been wondering about this as well. Is the recliner good just for lower back or also cervical?
    [ snip ]

    For my C5/6 fusion, the recliner was about the only place I could get comfortable and sleep for like 4 or 5 weeks. For my C6/7, my bed was more comfortable for me from day one post-op!?!

    No surgery on my mid or lower back to date, but I have found more and more if in my recliner 1/2 way back I am pretty darn comfortable. I don't know if it's because I hit the 'right de-load' position or what, but it helps. Surgery is on hold, so can't speak to how it works for post-op. I just know for me, my recliner and I are buds!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I use mine so thoroughly, we buy quality chairs and get a new one about every 2 years. I completely wear them out. It is imperative you find a good quality chair that fits your body. If one appears too "deep", then it is too big. I grew up with a 6'5, 250 lb dad who had a King size recliner and thought that was how they all were. My petite MIL has one so small I cannot stand sitting in it. I am 5'8 and currently have a chair by BEST brand that makes into a flat bed. Ideal for the bad nights.

    Otherwise, with my S1 nerve damage, the only relief I can get physically is to recline OFF that nerve. Sitting, walking, standing.....all trigger it. (The SCS is also a Godsend). But when at home and not busy, I am reclined.

    To show how important this is, we bought a minivan where the seats fold flat into the base of the vehicle, and we put my recliner in there and take it everywhere we go on trips where I will stay somewhere other than my house. It isn't worth "making do" with other chairs that weren't purchased to fit my body and needs, firmness wise.

    Did you know you can rent a recliner to see what you think? Now I don't know that a rental chair would meet your basic needs, but would give you an idea if you wanted to try one out first. Also, my chair had a warranty of 2 weeks, I think? We could return it for any reason. Maybe it was a month, I cannot remember.

    Hope you find one you like! (I could not tolerate the gravity chairs as they were not cushy enough. I am having to keep my nerves OFF hard surfaces, so must have a cushy seat.

    Take care,

  • I started looking, I think you're right- but they have these cushy gravity-type chairs too.

    Every summer we do this music in the park thing on Sundays, and this summer the usual fold-up chair is not going to cut it at all :( Especially since I can't drink OR eat chips or junk food any more :( I found a folding gravity chair!
  • I have both. A nice Lazyboy recliner for in house use and a gravity chair for outside. Lazyboy and Best make the better quality recliners. Like stated earlier, you need to try a few out until you find the one perfect for how you sit.
  • I was pregnant and had a ruptured disc so the husband and I decided to get a new bed(tried to help my misery anyway possible). We got a Sleep number bed 6 years ago and I tell everyone I know that I absolutely LOVE it. I can adjust it to how I am feeling on any given day. I tend to like a firmer mattress but there are somedays when hey I just need it a little softer.

    As far as recliner's I needed something that wasn't too expensive. We found a one year old Lazyboy recliner and I really like it. I can easily recline back and it is super comfortable.

    I wish you luck in your comfort journey!!!
  • I have an outdoor Zero G recliner in my office that I am testing. It's made of nylon webbing. They also make indoor recliners. The indoor one is $2K-$3K.

    The difference I see between traditional recliner and zero g recliners is in the way your legs get moved with it. In zero g your legs are always kept in the 90/90 position. That is bend 90 degrees at the waist then 90 degrees at the knees. Then roll the whole body back. Where a traditional recliner lets you stretch your legs out completely. Traditional recliner requires you to lean back quite far to unload your lower spine. The zero g does it with less recline. Still not good for watching TV. At work I have my monitor on a swing arm now and can lift and move it around. So I can stand, sit with variations. Like zero g chair, exercise ball, etc..

    I've noticed that since my fusion surgery. The recliner I used to love when I had nerve pain from the disc. Now I don't like it at all and have to prop pillows and back rolls to get comfortable.

  • How are the zero G recliners on your neck? I have always sat very straight so I hate most lawn chairs. The adirondack chairs are the worst because I am always straining my neck to sit up.
  • After my ACDF, my recliner was my best friend. We set it up as a "temporary" station for me with a rolling, tilting and adjustable table next to it. We never moved it, then I started having my lumbar issues.

    After my TLIF, my recliner was once again my best friend (although many said it would be too difficult), but I found that with the right pillow put behind me so I sit more forward, that it's just perfect.

    After my ACDF, my favorite position was fully reclined. After my TLIF, my favorite position is what Graham said, only reclining slightly with my feet just a foot or two off the floor, not a total recline.

    I'm afraid my chair will stay here forever now, even though it is a bit of an eyesore to my otherwise pretty living room.

  • Anything looks good in slipcovers and pillows!!!
  • LOL I guess you're right there. I think for us spineys, it sometimes gets to a point that comfort comes before beauty, in many ways. Yeah, we spruce up the place when we have special company, but we have some good friends that we have over regularly for game night and because they know what I go through and everything that's happened, we nor they care if the house isn't beautiful and spotless.

    But, you make a good point, nevertheless.

  • Kris,

    The one I am testing for use in my office working on a computer. They gave me 2 of the 1/2 roll cushions. They are pretty good size ones. I also have 2 of the McKenzie full rolls. Small and large one.

    To sit in a zero g chair and try to use a computer, laptop, netbook etc. You would need to prop your neck and support it well. I've been tempted to get rid of my workstation and just use a laptop at work. They could care less what I use as long as I can get my work done. I can bring in a recliner or whatever I want of my own too. My office, my way. So I have considered different approaches. Supporting your neck becomes a big issue when you don't just sit up straight in your chair.

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