How do you fall proof a bathroom? There are many different areas that are at risk for falling in the bathroom and they all must be considered. Since there is the potential for water in the entire area if a shower is located in the bathroom, you must be especially thorough when fall proofing the bathroom.
The first area we are going to look at is the toilet. This may not seem obvious at first, but fall proofing the toilet is extremely important. Similar to a chair, it must be easily accessible by the senior. This means it has to be at an optimal height. The toilets most houses come standard with are too low and a struggle can ensue when trying to both sit down and stand up after going to the bathroom. This is why we recommend getting a raised toilet attachment. This helps with both standing up and sitting down and is available at most hardware stores and/or medical equipment stores. They are pretty easy to install, and if you have any issues, simply call your local handyman, which the hardware store/medical equipment store can help you find.
The next area to consider when fall proofing a bathroom is the area outside the shower. You need to make sure this area stays dry and that there is adequate grip for the person’s feet. Anti-slip mats are a must. Additionally, if there is room for a chair, it makes it much easier to dry off when sitting. Grab bars should be installed along all of the walls outside the shower for added stability.
The shower is the most important part of fall proofing to consider because there is water (which is obvious). Water makes things slippery. In order to prevent slippage, we recommend installing a chair for bathing. This way the elderly individual at risk for falling can sit down and relax while taking the shower rather than being nervous. Additionally, if there are any steps going into or out of the shower, they should be leveled and anti-slip material should be installed in the shower. An adequate drain should also be installed so water doesn’t linger in the shower and/or get into any other parts of the bathroom.
The last thing to consider is what if an accident still happens even with all of these precautions taken when fall proofing the bathroom? A medical alert is a great device to have on hand. Make sure the medical alert is water resistant and can be worn in a shower. If an emergency does happen, simply press the medical alert necklace or bracelet button and you should be good to go. Even if you fall proof everything it is still important to have a way to get help even if there is minimal chance of having a medical emergency.
Our most basic medical alert system; includes both a bracelet and necklace attachment.
Linear PERS Product Page
A mobile medical alert; speak directly to an operator through the wearable device.
eResponder Product Page