Guest Author – Charlie Kimball
Charlie Kimball works for MedicalCareAlert.com, a Michigan-based company providing home care monitoring for family members who choose to stay at home despite medical challenges. Charlie is a graduate of Wayne State University in Detroit. She blogs for her company.
The bathroom can be the most unsafe part of the house, but only if you don’t take precautions. There are many things that you and your loved one can do to prevent the possibility of falling in the bathroom. Here, we present several ways to fall proof your bathroom.
- Replace towel holder rail with handrail
Installing a metal handrail in your bathroom can provide enough leverage for your relative to pull themselves up out of the bathtub or from near the toilet. The handrail itself can be picked up at any home improvement store and can be installed by yourself or a trained professional.
- Put non-slip grippers in tub bottom
Give the bottom of the tub a rougher texture so that your loved one’s feet are able to gain a little bit of purchase. The grippers placed might easily prevent the need to use a medical alert button for an emergency.
- Non-slip floor mats
There are (what feels like) a million places where someone can fall in the bathroom. Any place where the water can pool presents a hazard which can be slipped on. The installation of non-slip floor mats for getting out of the shower or bathtub can be quite a blessing.
- Keep spare medical alert pendant near toilet and/or medical alert emergency wall communicator in tub/toilet area
When you walk into the patient rooms in a hospital, you’ll see a nurse call button available at every turn. When the button is pressed, someone will immediately answer and assess the situation, sending you the help that you need. The button on medical pendants performs much the same purpose.
- Improve lighting by putting in a night light and/or motion activated LED lighting
We might know the inside of the house from memory, but it’s much easier to see your surroundings when there’s light available. We prefer a combination of the nightlight and the motion activated LED lighting, as there might be a little extra needed on the trip.
- Install a raised bathroom seat
The raised bathroom seat provides a way for your loved one to easily get up and down from the toilet. This is a great solution for those people who have issues with their hips, legs, and back. Many of our elders fall when they’re transitioning from position to position. If they do fall, they’ll at least have a pendant near the toilet, right?
- Use liquid soap instead of bar soap
Bar soap has more of a propensity to slip from the hands of those who are using it, forcing them to bend down and pick it up. Remove the possibility of extra movement and you’re reducing the possibility of falling.
- Make sure that your elder’s shower stall doesn’t have a high threshold
If you have the opportunity to investigate the shower stall before they move in, make sure that the threshold is as low as possible. As long as the drain system is working appropriately, there should not be the need for a tall one.
- Make sure that the hot water from the water heater won’t scald and burn
We have the tendency during the winter months to make the water from the water heater as hot as possible. While that hot water can be soothing, it can also be a danger for some seniors because they become more sensitized as they get older.
- Use shower seating
There are shower chairs which are comfortable for sitting in the shower and washing. Combine that with a shower wand which can easily be used to access all parts of the body to help maintain hygiene.
It’s important that you and your loved ones remain safe, regardless of where you go inside your house. The below infographic is the visual representation of above so that you can get a better idea about some of the tips that we’ve offered here.
For more articles like this, see: Resources for Central Virginia, Aging in Place, Assistive Technology, Resources for Central Virginia – Charlottesville, Resources for Central Virginia – Harrisonburg, Resources for Central Virginia – Staunton, Resources for Kansas City.
Do you need help managing the care of an elderly loved one in Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, or Staunton Virginia or in Kansas City or Overland Park, Kansas?
Contact us at Care is There Geriatric Care Management for a free consultation: 800.434.1633 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We specialize in geriatric care management, support for independent living, assisted living enhancement and peace of mind for long distance caregivers.