The older we get, the more common aches and pains become, often just from doing regular day-to-day activity. So, mobility problems are something you may want to plan for when it comes to your senior years, even if you are relatively healthy and active. If you or a loved one are facing mobility problems and don’t want to move to a more accessible house, then you can remodel your home with mobility in mind.
The bathroom is one area in particular where slips and falls can be common for seniors due to wet and slippery surfaces, so let’s take a look at some remodeling ideas to consider. And bathroom remodels can last decades, so you could even start thinking about this kind of thing in your 50s or 60s if you’re planning on staying in the same house for the decades to come.
Trips, slips, and falls can be especially dangerous for older adults as our bone strength and density generally decline as we age. The material and finish of your bathroom floors can make a big difference when preventing slips. Common tile materials like porcelain and natural stone can have a textured finish applied to them to provide more grip and make them less slippery than tiles with a glossy finish. Rubber and cork are other materials that can make great non-slip surfaces.
Think about the slipperiness of the floor of your shower or bathtub, too. You can simply place rubber bathmats down on the floor or apply grip stickers to provide a simple non-slip surface.
For someone with a physical disability or low mobility, getting in and out of the bathtub can be a challenge, and even some showers. A shower one the same level as the bathroom floor, with no ridge or step up, is a simple solution, but also consider the challenge of standing up in the shower while bathing. Adding a shower seat is a simple solution. A walk-in bathtub is another great option, providing a lower entry threshold than standard baths.
Grab rails are essential for both safety and accessibility for anyone with low mobility or a physical disability. They are there to assist you when getting into and out of the tub, for example, or when lowering yourself down to the toilet and standing back up again. They are also there to help you catch yourself if you lose your balance or slip.
If you currently only have a bathroom on the second floor, then you should consider adding an additional bathroom on the first floor in case you start to have difficulty going up and down the stairs. The second-floor bathroom is still important, though, if your bedroom is upstairs, allowing you to easily use the bathroom if you wake up in the night.
Whatever you’re planning for your upcoming bathroom remodel, contact The Kitchen Center for our custom design and installation services in Winston Salem, NC.