Hot Tub


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Curtis and Heidi purchased a hot tub in August of 1999, and had they known better, they would have gotten one in the beginning. Curtis felt wonderful suspended in the warm water; it was the only time his bottom got any relief from the weight of his body. They would go in everyday, and Heidi would hold him so that he was secure, and at the same time help his legs and arms move, or massage his muscles. Later, when Curtis lost more control, Heidi would hold him while another moved and massaged his body, or vice versa. The whole time Curtis had the hot tub, he was on his external respiratory aid, the bi-pap, full time, and could not move his legs or his arms on his own. A local welder created a device that would fit the top half of his hydraulic lift. So, he would be transferred from his recliner to his wheelchair with the lift, and then be wheeled out to the tub. Then, the lift would be disassembled so that the top half could be inserted into the home made device. Friends and family help Curtis into his hot tubThen, Curt was lifted and lowered into the tub (his air, also, was an issue during this and all procedures, please see Equipment for more information). Later, he was lifted out with the lift, seated in his wheelchair until the lift was put back together so that it could help him out of the wheelchair. This procedure was best performed with three people, besides Curt. But, Curtis and Heidi did it alone on many occasions. In addition, they also went in occasionally after Curt had a feeding tube and thus had to take the necessary precautions of making sure the site was kept dry, and that he be given plenty of water afterwards in order to eliminate the risk of dehydration. The hot tub made life easier for Curtis. Curtis and Heidi in their hot tub, August, 1999For two months, his time in his hot tub was one more thing he had to look forward to, to live for.  Before the hot tub, when he was confident in his breathing and was still mobile, swimming helped him tremendously.  Back to Living With ALS.