As you may know, we help many clients with their plans for aging in place, which can call for specific remodels or renovating certain spaces in the home. One of the areas we get the most questions about is the bathroom, where safety concerns become a priority. What happens if moving around the bathroom becomes more difficult with age? How do you help minimize the risks of slipping and falling?
Including these features as part of your remodel can make the bathroom safer without losing any of the features you love. Let’s look at some of the most popular.
Grab bars and safety rails help people stabilize and move around the bathroom safely, as well as providing a quick grip if someone slips. These bars are often most useful in the shower or bathtub and near the toilet, where they can provide helpful leverage. Since smooth bars can get a little slippery when wet, grab bars that include gripping materials are often a good idea for shower accessories.
Choosing the correct lighting in the bathroom is important for many reasons. As we’ve mentioned previously, as we age and our vision changes, having appropriate lighting levels is important. Where you choose to install your lighting is equally important. Instead of choosing lighting that may be difficult or dangerous to change the bulbs, you may want to consider vanity lighting or other fixtures such as wall sconces which can make replacing bulbs easier in the future. For added convenience, you may want to consider lighting with sensors that will turn on and off as you enter and exit the bathroom.
A bathroom’s floor should be resistant to moisture and a non-slip surface – a combination that can be difficult to find. A popular option is to apply a non-slip coating to compatible floors that don’t require a major remodel. There are also anti-slip mats that can be positioned in front of showers or tubs to create a safe zone.
If your shower doesn’t have any place to sit down, consider a new shower installation with a bench or area for sitting. Standing up in the shower for a long period of time can grow tiring for seniors and increase the chances of slipping. It’s also easier to clean and manage soaps or shampoos while you are sitting down. These features don’t take up much space, but you may want to think about a full shower replacement to incorporate them.
As we get older, tubs can become difficult to navigate and can raise the risks of a fall at the worst possible times. As a result, a popular remodel option is to switch to a walk-in tub or a shower insert with low edges that remove these dangers.
Reducing Clutter and Dangers
Clutter in the bathroom can cause several issues with aging in place. First, if open shelves and counters are filled with items, that makes them easier to accidentally knock to the ground, where they can be slipping hazards, or at least annoying to pick back up again. Second, unnecessary stands, lamps, or other objects can be additional hazards if someone does slip and fall. These problems are easily dealt with via a new cupboard or drawer installation in the bathroom – we can help you find room!
If you have any additional questions or would like a quote on a bathroom remodel, let us know today! Here at Quality Craftsmen, we can help you get your home ready for the future. We are certified aging in place specialists helping families throughout the East Cobb area create a checklist and make recommendations of changes you may need to make to ensure you can continue living in your home today, tomorrow and well into the future. Contact us today to get started.
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