3 Bathroom Safety Tips for the Elderly

Elderly people are prone to falls, especially in the bathroom where the floor can get slippery. It’s important to keep the following tips in mind to ensure the safety of the senior citizens at home.   

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Install grab bars
Many elders use towel bars or shower/tub features to hold onto while climbing in and out of the shower/tub. Towel bars are good for holding towels but aren’t built to support weight. Instead, install grab bars in easy-to-reach places to help support balance when entering and exiting the shower or tub.

Grab bars are best suited for elders with good upper-body strength who are able to hold onto grab bars while moving or standing. All grab bars should be slip-resistant (‘grip’ surface bars are better than those bars with high gloss finish), color contrasted from the wall for visibility, and securely fixed to the studs of the wall for adequate support (“bolted on” bars are preferable to suction cup bars, which could easily slip away when body weight is applied).

Where’s the best place to install grab bars? Look where the elder normally holds onto when entering or exiting the shower and place the grab bars there. The trick is not to change one’s behavior (which is difficult to do) but to make behavior safer. Source: ConsumerAffairs

Set a comfortable water temperature       
This reduces the potential for scalding. A comfortable temperature is around 90-to-100 degrees Farenheit. Obviously, the right water temperature depends on the individual, (48.88 Celsius). Water that is hotter increase the potential for burns. Source: Seniors.LoveToKnow

Use appropriate lights
Lighting throughout the room should be bright with a minimal amount of glare. Plan on a ceiling fixture or fixtures to provide general room lighting, but you should also add task lighting around sinks, tubs and showers. Source: SeniorHomes

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