While you may consider your bathroom to be a safe place where you are able to relax and slow down with a soothing bath or invigorating shower at the end of an extended day, for senior loved ones, the bathroom is undoubtedly probably the most dangerous room in the home. With slippery floors which are even slipperier when damp, closed-in spaces, and hard, unforgiving surfaces, falls are alarmingly common, and sometimes lead to severe injury.
At Enhanced Home Care, we’re always prepared to perform an assessment of the house and recommend safety modifications in the bathroom to lessen the risk of falls. And because January is National Bath Safety Month, it is the best time to share some actions you can take right now to help keep your loved ones safe throughout each part of the bathroom:
On the Floor
When you initially step into the bathroom, look over bathmats and any other rugs to be certain they’re firmly secured to the floor and free of loose edges to cause tripping hazards. Make sure the floor is always dry and clean, and do not wax bathroom floors.
In the Sink
Install ADA-compliant faucets, which feature both easy-to-turn handles and an adjustable hot water safety stop in order to avoid burns.
Around the Toilet
Remove and replace standard toilets with ADA-approved versions, which are elevated and safer for senior loved ones; or, install a raised seat onto existing toilets. Keep a medical alert button near the toilet, allowing the individual to easily call for help if needed, along with a firmly installed grab bar.
In the Bathtub and Shower
On the whole, showers or walk-in bathtubs are safer for older adults than standard tubs. Make sure the shower features both securely installed grab bars (strong enough to support the weight of an adult) along with a shower chair and hand-held shower wand. A waterproof medical alert button should always be worn into the shower.
Put frequently-used items, such as soap, shampoo, towels, washcloths, comb/brush, toothbrush, etc. in easy-to-reach locations, off the floor to make sure nothing poses a fall risk. Utilizing contrasting colors on the floor, walls, and vanity/storage spaces enhances safety as well.
And, possibly the very best tip we can offer is to engage the services of Enhanced Home Care! Our professional and highly-qualified caregivers are available to make certain that personal care needs, including bathing, showering, using the toilet, and hair/oral care are met with the utmost awareness to dignity and independence, while making sure older adults stay safe.
Learn more about our top-rated home health services in Overland Park, KS by contacting us any time at 913-327-0000 for a free in-home consultation and to find out how we’re making life better for older adults every single day!