Not only do some seniors have particular preferences when it comes to aesthetics and decor, those getting on in years may need special accommodations to keep them safe from injuries due to falls or slipping. There are several general guidelines decorators can keep in mind when they're designing a bathroom for people in their twilight years.
Online information provider Essortment points out that the majority of accidents that take place in the home occur in the bathroom, especially for older people. Some steps to help ensure bathroom safety for seniors should seem a bit obvious - such as sticking rubber mats at the floor of the bathtub. But Essortment also encourages those concerned with the possibility of slipping in the bathtub to put a grab bar - not unlike the rails often placed next to staircases - in the shower area. The source states that, as many accidents happen when people are getting out of the tub, installing a grab bar may be a wise choice for those concerned about a fall. This Old House goes one step further, noting that rails could also be placed around the toilet.
Helping keep seniors uninjured
Meanwhile, other aspects of bathroom safety for elderly people might not be so obvious to designers. For example, This Old House notes that doors that open with the push of a lever could be helpful for a bathroom-user coping with arthritis. Bright lights should be installed in the bathroom and in all the surrounding hallways and rooms to increase the chances a person with failing eyesight can see where he or she is going.
Products designed to help prevent falls
The website Unique Home Solutions provides a list of special bathroom utilities. It can be hazardous for someone with coordination problems to climb in and out of an ordinary bathtub, so walk in bathtubs with doors installed are noted as a way to avoid putting anyone who's ailing at risk. Tub seats are recommended as more cost-efficient products to consider in order to achieve similar results. Handheld showerheads may be helpful for anyone struggling with joint-stiffening conditions, and making doors wide will be quite beneficial for those who rely on wheelchairs or similar devices to move around.
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