When we think “bathroom,” we think of relaxation, peace, and quiet. We love a “me time” where we could relieve ourselves or a warm, refreshing bath where we could just get lost in the moment. However, as we grow older, we tend to develop more fear as this once comforting place has now become more dangerous.
For some seniors, taking a bath or shower can be one of their only times of peace and quiet each day—and they shouldn’t have to worry about falling. National Bath Safety Month is a reminder that we can still enjoy a nice bathroom time while prioritizing our safety and those of our family, especially our older ones.
Addressing Potential Challenges Of Senior Bath Safety
It’s important to be aware of potential challenges that seniors face when bathing. Knowing their needs will help us determine how to meet those needs. Some of these challenges may include:
👀 Poor vision and other physical condition
🏥Medical Conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease – both of which can cause confusion and difficulty walking.
🚿 Wet floors
🔅 Low light levels
In addition to safety considerations, it is also important to keep bathrooms clean and organized at all times. It is also practical to plan for emergencies by having supplies on hand in case a medical emergency happens while taking a bath or showering. By taking these simple steps, we can ensure that our loved ones can enjoy an optimal bathing experience without ever having to worry about injury!
How To Create A Safe Bathroom Environment For Seniors
🛁 Install grab bars wherever possible. Contrary to the common misconception that grab bars can only be installed in certain places, these handy buddies can be placed wherever necessary.
🛁 Ensure that proper lighting is available in all bathrooms. Adequate lighting can make it easier for our older ones to see in the bathroom and will help them avoid straining their eyes.
🛁 Reduce slip and trip hazards by installing slip-resistant surfaces and utilizing non-slip mats in the bathtub or shower area.
🛁 Add supportive handrails near the bathtub or shower area if needed. This will help reduce the chances of someone falling and becoming injured.
🛁 Place items within reach such as towels, soap, and shampoo.
🛁 Make sure cabinet handles are properly secured so that no one will fall while trying to open them.
🛁 Invest in a shower bench or chair for your loved ones who need assistance getting out of the tub or shower.
🛁 Repair any broken tiles, grout, or caulk so that your bathroom is always safe and functional.
🛁 Secure all electrical cords and plugs.
🛁 Remove any tripping hazards by cleaning clutter from around the room.
🛁 Install a medical alert system so that your loved ones can call for help in case of an emergency situation.
🛁 If situations require, enlist help from family members or hire a caregiver. This will reduce stress levels for everyone involved.
No matter the age or ability level of our loved one, it is essential to maintain a safe and comfortable bathroom environment for them. With a few simple steps, such as installing grab bars and non-slip mats, investing in emergency response systems, and creating an accessible living space, we can make sure that our elderly family members are given the best care possible while enjoying their time in the bathroom!
As this National Bath Safety Month comes to a close, let us take this opportunity to reinforce our commitment to ensuring senior safety, not only in the bathroom but also in all areas of their lives.
Creating an accessible living space outside of the bathroom is also important for ensuring senior safety. We would be happy to provide assistance in creating an accessible space for your loved ones!