Whether you or someone in your household is getting older or you need to accommodate a disability, an accessible bathroom is one of the most important areas in your house to remodel. More than 2/3 of emergency room visits are due to bathroom falls with the tub and shower being the most hazardous areas for young adults and most falls for the elderly occurring near the toilet. Here are some tips to consider when you’re thinking about making your bathroom more accessible.
Know Your Options
Whether you have limited or difficult mobility, or you have to accomodate for wheelchair access, a shower/tub combination makes it near impossible to shower easily. We recommend a walk-in shower with a rolling or fixed shower seat, a level entrance sloping to the drain, and a wide shower entrance or door. You can also opt for a walk-in tub – they have a super low step-in height, extra wide door options, and heated surfaces for optimal comfort.
Walk in Showers are a great option for any home. You won’t have to worry about remodeling in the future! Walk-in showers from Home Smart can feature low-threshold or barrier-free bases, built-in bench seating, safety grab bars, and more. Want to learn more about our accessible showers and baths? Keep reading!
Walk-in baths are designed with you in mind to create an effortless and independent bathing experience. Kohler walk-in tubs feature accessible control panels that will activate and adjust massaging jets, handheld shower wands, and easy-access door latches so you won’t have to worry about potential leaks and future slips. Kohler walk-in baths feature extra wide doors, ultra-low safe-step entrance, and handrails for added security.
Slipping in the bathroom is a danger for everyone regardless of age or mobility. You want to ensure that you install slip-resistant tiling, like a textured tile or pebbled floor, or use a slatted wood mat in the shower to prevent falls. Make sure all areas in the bathroom are clearly lit and that you have overhead lighting in the shower. Again, installing grabbing bars is an essential safety feature.
Grabbing bars should be installed in all bathing areas. If optimizing for wheelchair access, you’ll want to think about the turning radius and width of the chair to customize shower depth and door width as well.
Safety grab bars and bathtub handrails give you places to hold so that you can maintain your balance and help you maneuver around your shower or bath safely. Grab bars ideally are found both at the entrance and the back or side of your shower. A slick floor or wet tub can increase your risk of falling, so safety bars are a must for any bathroom. Home Smart offers a wide variety of safety bar types, designs, and finishes, so it can complement your personal style.
Your shower or bath model options depend on whether you need wheelchair access. If you are accommodating for a wheelchair, you’ll never have to sacrifice style for safety with Kohler walk-in showers. Home Smart offers barrier-free, accessible shower options so you can regain independence.
Built-in bench shower seating enables you to bathe while seated without having to lower yourself down to a bathtub floor. This is a comfortable, safe, and stylish option for anyone, regardless of age or handicap.
There are plenty of other safety features that can be added to your new walk-in shower, including shower lockers for soaps and shampoos, and shower controls for easy adjustment.
Think about the width of your bathroom door, how low light switches need to be, and the general layout of the bathroom – especially if it needs to be wheelchair accessible. Take into consideration the turning radius of the chair in key areas like the shower, toilet, and vanity. Storage options should be adjusted to accommodate low reach or limited mobility. The location and height of other items like towel hooks, soap dispensers, outlets, etc. will also need to be customized.
We understand this is a lot to think about, but the good news is you don’t have to do it alone! As the area’s only exclusive Kohler walk-in bath and LuxStone shower dealer, we take bathroom safety seriously and want people to feel comfortable and independent. If you’re ready to take on this project, we’d love to come out and give you a free quote. Give Home Smart Industries a call at (855) 646-4000 or fill out our contact form today!