Many falls happen when individuals slip or trip. When you fall in the bathroom, you run the risk of lying there for hours before someone finds you. You can avoid many falls in the bathroom if you have prepared your it for your life of aging in place.
As your needs change with age, your home should change with you. The right safeguards in place will help you stay upright and allow you all the luxuries that bathrooms offer.
A great bathroom remodeling job will help to prevent future falls and give you peace of mind. Consider these bathroom remodeling essentials for gracefully aging in place.
If you do not currently have a bathroom on your main living level, remodel a space and create one. As you age, stairs become both a hassle and a hazard. Thus, create a bathroom with easy access for all individuals in your home.
Begin with the basic design of your bathroom. Does your bathroom have the space needed to accommodate an older adult’s needs?
Start with your entry. You should have an entryway of at least 34 inches to allow a wheelchair to pass through. To make the doorway more accessible, replace your old round doorknobs with lever doorknobs.
Also, consider a pocket, sliding door. This type of door makes for easier access when you have a wheelchair. You also have more room in both the hallway and the bathroom with a pocket door since you won’t have a door swinging in or out of the bathroom.
As you age, consider the extra space you will need in the bathroom. Create enough space to accommodate a cane, walker, wheelchair, or similar assistive device. The best space will create enough room to maneuver around the toilet, shower, sink, and tub.
You can also accommodate a wheelchair by leaving at least 27 inches of clearance under the sink. The top of the sink should reach approximately 32 to 34 inches away from the floor.
As you hang your mirror, keep individuals in mind and hang the mirror low. Also, tilt the mirror from the top.
Recent studies indicate that more than 230,000 people sustain injuries in the bathroom daily. These falls aren’t specific to seniors but rather happen to all ages. You can make your bathroom safer specifically for older individuals when you install bathroom features for seniors in particular.
Make sure you have a wide shower. To accommodate walkers and wheelchairs, have a zero-threshold shower installed. You can have this shower installed without a door if the floor slopes toward the drain. Trench drains around the perimeter of the shower will also capture the water and keep you from having a shower door or curtain.
Install a built-in seat to make showering easier. Finally, make sure you use a non-slip tile. Look for textured tile with some grit.
As you think about tips for aging in place, try to picture the bathroom as you age. You want a hand-held showerhead so you can easily clean yourself. We can even install the controls so an individual in a wheelchair can control the shower easily.
You can also have anti-scald mixing valves installed to keep the water temperature safe. Keep the water temperature limit to 120 degrees.
If you still want a tub in your bathroom remodel, you can have a walk-in tub installed. This type of tub allows you to step before you fill it. Then, you drain it before you step out.
You no longer have to step over the or worry about tripping over the edge.
As you seek to age in place, look for as many hands-free options as you can find for your bathroom.
Safety Features in Bathroom Remodeling
Your bathroom essentials should also include grab bars and other safety features. Install two bars on the sidewall of your tub right at your standing and sitting locations. Then put grab bars on all three walls of your shower and one near your toilet.
You should also install nonslip tile to prevent falls. Use small tiles to create a better surface for gripping. The extra grout between small tiles creates a surface with more texture and thus less chance of slipping.
There is also have the option of rubber flooring. This will create a nice cushion that feels good on your feet as well as gives you the stickiness to feel safe. Rubber flooring will cost more than tile but will also keep you safe.
Toilets For Seniors
As you look at bathroom remodeling for seniors, remember the most essential items in every bathroom. Every bathroom has a toilet.
To create a safer bathroom, install a higher toilet that stands three to five inches taller than standard toilets. This allows seniors the ease of getting off the toilet with less effort.
Closets and Shelves
Reinvent your storage as well when you renovate the bathroom for seniors. Use pull-out drawers rather than a cupboard. Use open storage for simple placement as well as a modern look.
Use as much natural light as possible. Light will brighten the room and increase visibility. Plus, it’s a natural mood lifter.
Consider installing a skylight to add extra light to the room and to create a soft, natural ambiance.
Also, think about installing a steam shower enclosure with recessed lighting. The steam shower can use natural lighting using skylights over it. This creates a luxurious and therapeutic experience for the shower user.
Aging in Place With Ease
Make aging easier by updating your bathroom. Basic bathroom renovations will keep you and your loved ones safe. They can be as simple as a new non-slip floor or grab bar, or as luxurious as a steam shower with skylights.
Do you need a major bathroom overhaul or just a minor bathroom renovation? Contact us. We have the resources and expertise to help you remodel your bathroom for your current and future needs.