Accidents in the home account for approximately a third of all accidents to seniors, and more accidents occur in the bathroom than anywhere else in the home. If you are moving an aging parent into your own home, or simply want to have peace-of-mind if your parents are choosing to stay in their house as they age, you'll want to make sure the bathroom is as safe as possible.
Much like you "baby-proofed" your home for kids, organizing your home so it's as safe as possible for the most vulnerable applies here, as well. Below are some ways you can "elder-proof" your bathroom:
Install safety-rails, also called grab bars, by the toilet and in the shower. It's imperative to make sure these items are properly installed so they are secure enough to support weight. These come in a variety of finishes, so you and your aging parents don't have to sacrifice style for safety.
Avoid falls by applying non-slip strips to the floor of the bathtub. Also purchase a non-skid mat for directly outside of the shower stall or bathtub.
Increase the wattage of bulbs in the bathroom for better visibility. Put a nightlight in the bathroom, and consider putting additional nightlights or motion lighting along the path from the bedroom to the bathroom.
Raised Toilet Seat
Current toilets can either be modified with a raised toilet seat, or replaced entirely with a higher toilet. A raised toilet can be a huge improvement for older knees.
Make sure that faucets are clearly labeled "Hot" and "Cold" to prevent burns, and make sure they are easy to turn for arthritic or shaky hands.
It takes a little effort and some common sense to make your aging loved one's environment safer. For a full list of products to make your bathroom a safe space, check out TheBathOutlet's collection of bathroom safety products