Even though you might consider your bathroom to be a safe refuge where you can relax and slow down with a soothing bath or invigorating shower at the conclusion of a long day, for senior loved ones, the bathroom is considered to be the most dangerous room in the house. With slippery floors which are even slipperier when damp, closed-in spaces, and hard, unforgiving surfaces, falls are alarmingly common, and sometimes lead to significant injury.
At Grace Home Care, we are always very happy to carry out a safety assessment and recommend home modifications for older adults to decrease the possibility of falls. And since January is National Bath Safety Month, it’s the best time to share some steps you can take today to ensure that your family members are safe throughout each area of the bathroom:
On the Floor
When you step into the bathroom, inspect bathmats and any other rugs to make certain that they are properly attached to the floor, without any loose edges to trigger tripping hazards. Ensure the floor is generally clean and dry, and do not wax bathroom floors.
In the Sink
Install ADA-compliant faucets, which offer both easy-to-turn handles and a variable heated water safety stop to prevent burns.
Around the Toilet
Replace standard toilets with ADA-approved versions, which are elevated and safer for the elderly; or, install an elevated seat onto existing toilets. Keep a medical alert button near the toilet, allowing a senior loved one to easily call for help when necessary, along with a correctly installed grab bar.
In the Bathtub and Shower
On the whole, showers or walk-in bathtubs are less hazardous for older adults than standard tubs. Ensure the shower features both securely installed grab bars (strong enough to support the weight of an adult) and a shower chair and handheld shower wand. A water-resistant medical alert button should be worn in the shower all of the time.
Put frequently-used items, such as soap, shampoo, towels, washcloths, comb/brush, toothbrush, etc. in easy-to-reach locations, off of the floor to make certain nothing poses a fall risk. Utilizing contrasting colors on the ground, walls, and vanity/storage spaces enhances safety as well.
And, probably the best tip we can offer is to engage the services of Grace Home Care! Our fully trained and experienced caregivers are available to make sure that personal care needs, for example bathing, showering, using the toilet, and hair/oral care, are met with the utmost attention to dignity and independence, while ensuring seniors remain secure and safe.
To learn more about our top-rated Topeka Alzheimer’s care and home care, call us any time at 785-286-2273 for a free in-home consultation and to find out more ways we are making life better for seniors, every single day!