An overbed table is a terrific convenience both for people who must or who simply like to spend long amounts of time in bed. An overbed table provides more support, stability and surface room than a bed tray and can be adjusted to accommodate the height of your bed’s mattress with a base that slides under your bed along the floor for a close fit.
A hospital overbed table is made specifically for use with a hospital style bed, but it’s important to measure the model you’re considering and your bed, checking clearance under the frame—many overbed table styles may fit even a hospital bed.
The features most important to you depend on the types of activities you want to accomplish in bed. An overbed desk tray table with a flat surface is great for writing, eating or playing cards, to name just a few activities. Reading is often easier with a tilt table—the tilt top overbed table surface enables you to angle your newspaper or book at the best level for your comfort. Some overbed tables offer part fixed and part tilting surfaces.
The finishes, colors and textures now available in overbed table designs means your choice of overbed table can have more of the look of a piece of furniture than a medical accessory.
These are some of the most popular features available to help you narrow down your selection:
- An easy to clean top that’s roomy enough for the activities you’d like to engage in.
- Adjustable table height to accommodate the height of your mattress. Some overbed tables can be adjusted for use while you’re sitting in a chair, including a wheelchair, as well as in bed.
- The adjustment mechanism should be easily to use and lock into place.
- An adjustable pivot and tilt arm allows you to position the work surface to the height, angle and tilt best for your task, providing you with more versatility.
- With overbed tables that offer tilt positions, you might want to look for a style with a lip along the lower edge for holding your book, newspaper or a pad and pen.
- Take note of the weight limit that the tabletop surface can handle—usually between 40 and 50 pounds. Standard overbed tables are not meant to provide support when getting up and down.
- Standard C-shaped or U-shaped bases have about 24" of space between the legs to slide under chairs as well as your bed. Wheel casters offer for easy maneuverability over all floor surfaces. Locking casters on the base of the overbed table mean that the table will stay put once you position it.