For seniors, the bathroom is the most dangerous room in a house. Your knees are not as strong as before and slips and falls can be tough on your old bones. More than 80 percent of all falls occur in the bathroom, but you can stop this from happening with a few minor changes.
Get a Grip
The combination of slippery floors and hard surfaces can be quite unforgiving to the elderly. Bathroom accessories for the elderly that provide you with handholds can minimize the risks of slips and make it easier to move around the bathroom. Get rid of mats or anything else that can slip under your feet or get entangled with your cane. Install grab bars in the bathroom, especially around the toilet. Sitting down and standing up puts a lot of stress on the knees. The change in body position also shifts your center of gravity—increasing your risk of losing your balance. Grab bars and supports around that area makes using the toilet easier and safer. Since you’ll be using it multiple times a day, your knees will thank you for the support, and you can make sure you won’t be part of some statistic.
Sit Down for a Soak
Showers and soapy water beneath your feet can be dangerous, but getting in and out of a tub is even more so. Walk-in tubs are good alternatives that let you enjoy your bath while keeping you safe. There’s no risk of drowning since you remain in a sitting position. Most walk-in tubs have doors that swing outwards, so you can remain safe even if something untoward happens. Getting in is as simple as opening a door and sitting down—no drastic change of position or elevation. Once inside, you just wait until the water rises and enjoy a relaxing bath. You can even take a book with you or watch a game on a tablet—just make sure it isn’t plugged in. Soaking in water—especially cold water—can be very beneficial to your health. Water disperses body heat, stimulating your body to burn fat to raise your temperature. If you can’t exercise, you can always take a bath.
Always See the Light
Getting up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom is a reality we all need to face. However, taking that trip while half-asleep and with your wits not fully awake can be a bit risky. Factor in darkness and lack of vision and things can start to get dangerous. Consider keeping the lights on in the corridors leading to the bathroom. Make sure the bathroom light switch is easy to reach—better yet, get one of those automatic motion-detecting lights. Seeing your surroundings clearly drops the risks of accidents by a big margin.
Growing old can be tough, but you don’t need anyone to take care of you yet. With just a few changes, you can ensure that the most dangerous room in your house turns into one of the safest.