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Moving someone in bed

If your relative or friend needs to stay in bed a lot or all of the time they may become sore or numb on body parts that carry the most weight. Regularly changing position can relieve pressure on these areas and make them feel more comfortable. 

Moving someone in bed may seem like a simple task, but it’s important to do it carefully. By following three simple steps, you can do it safely and without having to lift your relative or friend or cause them any discomfort. 

Step 1

Take away the duvet covers, any blankets and all except one pillow, then cross one of their legs over towards you.

Step 2

Move their arm over their chest and again towards you.

Step 3

With one hand on their hip and the other behind their shoulder, gently roll them in your direction.

Make sure your relative or friend isn’t at the edge of the bed at the start and finish of the move.

If you find moving your relative or friend difficult, profiling beds and active mattresses are available. Read our article about getting equipment or ask your district or Marie Curie Nurse for advice.

Always encourage your friend or relative to do as much for themselves as they can.

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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