The bathroom is one of the most important rooms in the house and one your senior loved one will need to use throughout the day. It’s important to make sure that the space is usable and safe. At Angels on Call, our caregivers are committed to ensuring the safety of our senior home care clients in Philadelphia. Here are our tips for making your bathroom safe against falls and injury.
What Are the Bathroom Risk Spots?
Chances are, you already know that the highest fall risks for seniors in the bathroom are when using the toilet and transferring in and out of the tub or shower. However, those aren’t the only risks bathrooms can pose. Sink tops, towel bars, unstable shelving, and even hampers and rugs can all pose risks, especially if your loved one experiences balance or mobility issues.
Install Bathroom Safety Features
Bathroom safety features can be some of the most useful and least expensive ways to prevent falls and injuries in the bathroom. These include,
- Secure grab bars inside and outside of the tub or shower
- Secure grab bards at the toilet
- Raised toilet seat
- Shower seat for showering seniors
- A bath bench to help seniors get into and out of the tub
- Non-slip mat or decals for the tub basin or shower floor
- Night light or motion-sensor lighting for nighttime bathroom visits
- Night lights in the hallway between the bedroom and bathroom
Additional Safety Considerations for the Bathroom
In addition to the safety features, there are additional ways you can make your bathroom safer for your senior loved one.
- Replace fluffy rugs with non-slip mats outside the shower, around the toilet, and in front of the sink.
- Adjust shelving to be torso to eye level so that your loved one doesn’t have to reach for an item or bend down.
- Clean the bathroom regularly to avoid slippery soap scum on surfaces.
Additional Tips to Avoid Clutter and Bending
If your loved one has balance issues or limited mobility, you may want to take additional precautions in your bathroom to avoid trips and falls. If you use a free-standing hamper in the bathroom, consider moving it to a safe corner of the bedroom to free up movement space. You should also consider a hanging waste basket for the bathroom instead of a floor waste basket. Not only will you remove a possible trip hazard, but you’ll save your loved one from having to bend down.
Importantly, avoid adding unstable components to your bathroom. Make sure that shelving is securely anchored to walls and avoid free-standing shelves in the bathroom or over the toilet that can either be trip hazards or insecure hand-holds if your loved one slips or trips.
Also, remember that being safe doesn’t mean inconvenience. Ensure your loved one has a secure place to place towels when they shower or bathe. Also, ensure they have a robe (shin length and without a loose belt) and a secure hook close to the shower or bath when they get out so they can dry, wrap up, and move safely to their bedroom to change clothes.
Are You Looking for Senior Home Care in Philadelphia PA?
Angels on Call is here for your family. Contact us to discuss your loved ones’ needs and set up a free in-home consultation.