Here's How You Can Make Bathrooms Safe For Senior Citizens
Population of senior citizens in India is approximately 12 crores. The growth rate of senior population is expected to exceed 17 crore by 2026. In such a scenario, many developers are creating housing projects that are meant for the senior citizens. It is very important to have houses that are safe for the senior citizens. The most important area is bathroom as a number of accidents take place in a bathroom. Thus, it becomes important to create a home wherein the seniors feel safe and secure.
Makaan IQ lists ideas that will help you in creating a senior-friendly bathroom:
Ensure safety with grab bars
You can ensure the safety of elders by simply placing grab bars near the bathtub or shower wall. These are capable of handling the entire weight of an adult. These are suitable for someone who have good upper body strength making them capable to grip the bar although there are grab bars that suction up to the wall. But the ones bolted on the wall must be chosen as they offer more security. You could also switch to floor-to-ceiling tension poles.
Go for a shower chair
It is very important to go for a shower chair as elderly people usually find it difficult to stand for a long time. Go for a chair that has rubber tips on the legs which will prevent the chair from sliding.
Invest in a walk-in tub
Installing a walk in tub in the bathroom reduces the risk of falling to a great extent. These tubs have doors preventing the users to climb as it is in the case of a traditional bath tub.
Opt for a raised toilet seat
A raised toilet seat is a great way to help seniors. These toilet seats raise the height of the seat by three to four inches making sitting comfortable for elderly.
Reduce chances of slipping by installing non-slip mats
Non-slip mats are a great way to minimize the risk of falling in the tub or shower. For this place a non-slip mat in every area where there is a possibility to fall. This includes areas near the shower/tub, toilet and sink.
Install door locks that are easy to handle
Go for lever style locks, faucets and other materials for simple access to the bathroom. This is mainly because people with osteoarthritis have difficulty in opening the bathroom's door. Also, going for outward-swinging doors is a good option giving easy passage to caregivers.
Important items must be easy to reach
It is very important to make sure that necessary items such as shampoos, soaps and oil are easy to reach. Mounted dispensers are easy to install. These can be easily refilled by minimizing the risk of bottles cluttering the shower.
Good Lighting is a must
This will ensure that they are no slips, falls and unnecessary collisions. Install multiple lights if necessary. Also, the passage leading to the bathroom must be well-lit. Make sure that the switches of geyser, heaters and lights can be accessed while sitting on the wheelchair. Dimmers can be used to adjust the brightness of the lighting depending on the users need.
Some additional tips:
- Keep a medical alert button by the toilet.
- Choose colours and floor patterns that aids visibility. Don't go for high-gloss paints and tiles that have an uncomfortable glare.
- Make sure that the home's floor is clear and there is no cloth or material that could be the reason for injury or accident.
- The sink must be wheelchair accessible.