Begin to enjoy your bath again with these safety tips that can help prevent common hazards and accidents from occurring. Seniors and individuals with limited mobility can benefit from implementing some suggestions that curb the risk of a fall and reduce the chance of an injury in the home’s bathroom.
If you have sacrificed the joy and pleasure of a bath due to a disability or mobility limitation, there are tips that can make it much safer. Falls are a very serious and very frightening reality for this demographic; falls can be problematic, injurious, and even fatal. Talk to the mobility professionals at Pacific Mobility for more strategies and suggestions to make the bath a safer place to be.
Enjoy your bath again with these safety tips:
- Keep a wide and well-lit berth. When it comes to tips for seniors and those with mobility limitations, a clear, well-lit pathway is key. Plug in a night light after dark to prevent falls when going in and out of the bathroom. Get rid of any clutter that is taking up space and not serving a purpose; keep décor to a minimum.
- Grab onto grab bars. Invest in and install grab bars near the toilet, tub, and sink, as well as near any stairs or steps in or out of the bathroom. These should be professionally implemented to ensure they are secure and will withstand pressure and weight when needed. Position these anyplace that you- or your loved one- may be sitting down or standing up, too.
- Get rid of tripping hazards. Eliminate tripping hazards like thresholds, rugs, or loose flooring. Keep the floor as clean and clear as possible. If it has a slippery, glossy surface, add some tread with textured paint or adhesive strips.
- Wear the right shoes. Wear shower shoes in and out of the shower or tub. These are helpful in preventing a fall. Use non-slip adhesive on the floor of the tub and shower for added tread and texture.
- Invest in a reaching tool Talk to mobility vendors about easy-to-use reaching tools that can help prevent falls when trying to reach for things or when attending to daily ADLs (activities of daily living), like bathing or getting dressed.
- Keep things clean. It helps to keep the bathroom, tub, and floor clean and dry at all times. If you are unable to physically wash the floor and bathroom surfaces regularly, it may be helpful to enlist the services of an aide or housekeeper if possible. There are some community programs for seniors that often offer services such as these for area residents.
- Lift the seat. Raise the seat of your toilet to reduce falls and injuries that occur when sitting and standing. Talk to a mobility vendor for simple solutions.
- Change the showerhead. An adjustable showerhead that you can hold in your hand may also make showering and bathing safer and easier. These hand-held heads offer more control which can help with seniors that are aging in place and living independently.
- Sit down. Buy a shower seat and sit down when showering or bathing. These are offered in varying styles to suit different types of shower stalls and bathtubs.
- Warm it up. An electric heated towel rack or bar can provide warm, luxurious towels after a tub or shower that helps keep you toasty warm. This may prevent you from catching a chill or a nasty cold when bathing in cool weather.
- Skip the candles. Reduce the risk of a fire and avoid candles in the bathroom- and throughout the house. Use battery-operated tea lights or flameless candles instead.
- Phone a friend. Put a landline phone extension in the bathroom or make a habit of taking your cell in each time you use the bathroom. This can offer you a lifeline if you happen to fall or need assistance.
- Avoid oils. When adding soaps and bath goodies to the tub, be careful. Don’t use oils or bath products that make the tub slippery later. This can be a recipe for disaster.
- Slow things down. Finally, take your time and slow down when preparing for, taking, and getting out of the tub. Don’t hurry to answer the phone or door. There is far less risk of falling when you take your time and are careful, particularly in slippery or damp bathrooms.
Talk to the mobility experts at Pacific Mobility for more information and insight into making your bathroom a safer, more secure place to spend time in. Feel like a bath? Go ahead- use these tips to reduce the risk of a fall and to create a safer environment for seniors, those with physical disabilities, or anyone! Call to learn more today.
President, Husband, Father, Grandfather Graduate of UC Davis- Bio Sci Major- Go Aggies! Jeff has extensive experience in all of Pacific Mobility’s products and services, and specializes in accessibility products as well as stairlifts, ceiling lifts and custom wheel chairs. His hobbies include spending time with family, gardening, mountain biking, exercising and off road motorcycle riding.
24 years as Owner/President of Pacific Mobility Center – selling, installing, and servicing stairlifts, porch lifts, ceiling lifts, pool lifts, handicap ramping, specialty wheelchairs, scooters, power wheel chairs, and other power mobility devices
Certified Environmental Access Consultant since 2008
Licensed General Contractor since 1998
Certified Aging in Place Specialist since 2016
Board Member for Home Access Professionals
Member of Association of Members of the Accessibility Equipment Industry (AEMA)