Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Putting thought into a bathroom renovation will make it relevant for years to come

Experts say that individuals renovating a bathroom in their homes may want to consider making changes to help create a space that will be safe and efficient for themselves and their families for years to come.

The Chicago Tribune reports that the number of Americans older than 65 is estimated to top 72 million by the year 2030, according to the U.S. Administration on Aging. As the majority of in-home injuries occur in the bathroom, especially among seniors, it's important to design bathrooms that are safer for the aging population.

Bathtubs and showers that contain benches and grab bars can help cut down on the number of falls suffered by older individuals. Removing the bathtub and opting instead for a shower that is easier to get in and out of can also reduce bathroom accidents. Some may even choose to eliminate the need to step over a lip of any sort and turn their space into a wet room.

"In a wet room, the shower and bathroom share one big, open space that has an extra floor drain and slightly sloped floors for drainage," explains.

Other senior-friendly changes include installing an elevated toilet seat, using brighter light bulbs and night lights, keeping floors clear of hazards and improving storage.