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Making someone comfortable in bed

Because of their illness, your relative or friend may be forced to spend most or all of their time in bed. You can help make this experience more pleasant for them.

Not being able to get out of bed by yourself can be an uneasy and unnatural feeling. And having lots of medical equipment in the bedroom can make it feel like a hospital ward.

A few adjustments can help your relative or friend feel more comfortable and relaxed.


Lighting can affect mood, especially when you’re not able to go outside. Natural lighting makes the room feel less claustrophobic. Bedside lamps and lights fitted with dimmer switches can also help your relative or friend to relax.


Listening to music or a radio station can help them feel more comfortable and at ease. Make sure there’s a radio, CD player or MP3 player in the room. Ask what they’d like to listen to.

When people are feeling low they might not enjoy music they used to like – but introducing new music might help lift their spirits. If they don’t want to listen to it, respect their wishes.

Photos, art and ornaments

Move photos of loved ones, art prints and ornaments your relative or friend enjoys seeing in to their bedroom to make them feel happier.


Make sure your relative or friend has water or something to drink within easy reach.

Hopefully these tips will help you to make things more comfortable for your relative or friend, and create a more relaxing atmosphere for them to live in.

External websites

Carers UK   – Carer-to-carer support

NHS Choices   – Carer tips

This page is for general information only. It's not intended to replace any advice from health or social care professionals. We suggest that you consult with a qualified professional about your individual circumstances. Read more about how our information is created and how it's used.

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