As people age, some degree of mobility loss is expected. For some people, this might mean they can no longer participate in the same level of athletic activities. For others, it can mean being able to get around their home or attend to daily necessities without assistance. For these latter individuals, mobility loss in the bathroom can be especially discouraging, but the following 4 products can help you to regain a certain level of independence in the bathroom again.
Raised Toilet Seats
Needing assistance to get safely on and off the toilet can be one of the most difficult things for seniors to face. Many toilets just don’t have the necessary height to be accessible to those with reduced mobility. But there’s an easy way to fix that. Raised toilet seats can be added to your existing toilet for a low cost, with very little effort. It instantly adds several inches of height to your toilet seat, making it easier to get on and off on your own. Many of these seats even have small handles on both sides to help support you as you sit and rise.
Safety Grab Bars
There are many locations throughout the bathroom where installing safety grab bars can improve accessibility and safety for those with reduced mobility. One location is alongside the toilet. A bar mounted to the wall can provide a secure source of support to help you pull yourself to your feet, or to carefully and safely lower yourself to the seat.
Safety grab bars are also beneficial beside the tub and/or shower stall. Tubs have a high wall that can be incredibly difficult to climb over if you have reduced mobility. A nearby safety bar can make it easier to step over without having to ask for assistance. And though shower stalls don’t have that same hurdle for entry and exit, it still has a threshold and a slippery surface inside. In fact, you should consider mounting a safety both inside and outside the stall to help prevent slips and falls.
Tub and Shower Benches
Speaking of the shower and tub, getting in and out aren’t the only possible difficulties for those with reduced mobility. In a shower, you’re expected to stand for an extended period of time, bending and balancing as needed to wash your extremities. In a tub, you may be able to sit, but you have to sit on level with the floor, which can be extremely difficult to get into and out of if you don’t have the necessary muscle strength.
Both of these issues can be solved by adding a bench or chair to your tub or shower. Shower chairs can simply be set inside of your shower stall, providing a secure place to sit as you wash, and therefore reducing the odds of a fall.
Bath benches can actually help with the seating issue as well as the entering and exit difficulties. Bath benches often extend over the edge of the tub, with one set of legs that rests on the floor. This allows you to sit on the bench and slide into the tub, lifting one leg over the wall at a time. Obviously though, this doesn’t allow you to sit in the water of a filled tub; rather, these are designed for use with shower-tub combos. If you want a more accessible tub that you can actually sit and soak in, we recommend looking into a walk-in tub.
For some individuals, simply getting to the bathroom is an accessibility issue itself. Reduced mobility combined with reduced bladder control can make getting out of bed and to the bathroom in the middle of the night impossible. If this is an issue for you, we recommend a 3-in-1 commode.
This product serves multiple purposes: It can be placed beside your bed at night with a bucket beneath it for easy use in the event of a late-night emergency. It can be placed over a toilet without a bucket to provide a raised seat that is easier to use. And finally, the armrests act as built-in safety grab bars to help you get on and off the commode more easily.
Losing mobility in the bathroom is difficult to face, but you’re not alone. Many senior citizens deal with this same issue on a daily basis, and there are many ways that you can make your bathroom more accessible so that you can regain a measure of independence. If you require any of the above bathroom safety products, contact Elixair Medical today.