Has it come time for you to renovate your bathroom to allow for aging in place? The time for these changes is not when you need them immediately; but for in the near future, so that when you do need these enhancements, they are available. At one point in time aging in place meant adding clinical almost hospital-type items to your home; however, today’s designs provide the same form and function, without losing the beauty and sophistication of a nice bathroom. These changes may be necessary, but they don’t have to be necessarily unattractive.
As you age, you do not have to give up having a bath, especially with technology today. There are bathtubs that are raised up off the ground, with a movable wall. You can sit in the bathtub, at the same height as a chair – swing your legs over and raise the wall with a control, then fill the tub with water at your required temperature. All of the controls are close at hand, giving you access to a shower head to wash your hair. More prevalent and more common is the walk-in bathtub; these tubs have a small door built into them, allowing you to get into the tub without having to step over and risk a fall.
When renovating your bathroom to improve ease of use, one of the easiest things to do is to add a shower chair to your bathroom. A cheap alternative to completing full renovations, these plastic chairs are waterproof and give you a place to sit while using the shower. However, just like anything else, there are many alternatives – and improvements. Another way to make your shower easier to use is to install one that is curbless – these showers have easy and wide openings, and do not have any ledges, allowing wheelchairs and mobility devices to maneuver in and out of the shower.
One of the most common changes when renovating your bathroom to improve use when aging gracefully is to lower the sinks. This gives access to those in wheelchairs or mobility devices. Another excellent addition would be to add touchless faucets; arthritic hands cannot easily turn knobs, and this new innovation in faucets allows you to wash your hands without turning anything at all. One other addition that should be included is a sturdy washbasin; slips and falls in the bathroom do occur, and having something to hold onto in the bathroom can prevent many accidents.
Installing a toilet with a higher seat, and adding a rail to improve ease of use, are keys to aging gracefully in your home when completing bathroom renovations. It is also possible to purchase toilets with a wider seat for comfort. As always, ensure that necessities are close at hand; the toilet paper roll should be close at hand, but not in the way, and the toilet should be in a wider spot of the bathroom to improve manoeuvrability. Find a toilet that will work for you now, and in the future as well.