Bathroom remodeling is something that we all think of from time to time. We want a bigger shower, a soaking tub, a child-friendly tub, then we realize we aren’t getting any younger so we need to focus on things that will help us as we age.
I hope this puts a little perspective on the fact that we generally remodel our bathrooms in some way every five to seven years. Modifications to our home usually comes shortly before or after a major life change. Starting a family, for example, creates the need to build a room onto the home in many cases. Today we’re going to talk about aging in place and some of the changes that need to happen in your bathroom to make it safe for your elderly years.
Okay, when most of us think of grab bars we think of hospital rooms or public restrooms. Trust me when I say those bit chrome covered tubes aren’t the only type of grab bar you can install. You can choose decorative grab bars that add to the decor in your bathroom as well. Think about how pretty it would be to have a nature themed spa-like bathroom with a rainfall shower head and a grab bar that looks like a branch. Do a Google search for decorative grab bars and you’ll see what I mean.
Remove the clunky glass doors and create an amazing open concept bathroom without any type of curb. Curbs are not conducive to life with a wheelchair or a walker, and many trip and fall accidents happen each year because of uneven areas in the flooring and rugs. Avoid the use of rugs throughout most of the rest of the home as well.
Bathtubs introduce a slip and fall risk, especially freestanding tubs. The best way to design your tub with the future in mind is to build one or two steps that lead up to it and install a tub that has at least one step in it for stability. And don’t forget to install an amazing grab bar to assist with stability as well.
Cold feet aren’t fun at any age, and especially when you’re older. Heated flooring is relatively inexpensive and makes a huge difference during the winter months. It greatly reduces the need for rugs in the bathroom, which, as we just mentioned, can be a serious trip and fall hazard. Keep your feet toasty with radiant heat flooring instead of rugs as you age.
The furniture throughout the bathroom will likely need to adapt as you age, too. The vanity and toilet will likely need to be raised to make them more easily accessible if you’re in a wheelchair or using a walker. Choose an automatic flush toilet and a hands-free sink with automatic soap dispenser.
Give me a call at 631-608-3375 to discuss modifying your home and remodeling your bathroom with the future in mind. We can talk about the many ways you can go about making your home safe for someone with mobility issues.