Here in the UK, we have an ever increasing ageing population, many of whom want to live independently in their own homes, and who can blame them? As people get older, it becomes more difficult to carry out the same tasks as what they have done in the past due to mobility problems, which includes stepping in and out of the bathtub to bathe or shower. With increasing frailty and being unsteady on their feet, many older people are in danger of slipping when stepping over the side of the bath, which can make the process very dangerous as well as difficult.
For people who are finding it harder and harder to get into a bathtub, then a walk in shower enclosure may be more appropriate. Installing a shower enclosure isn’t a big job, and work really well in bathrooms where space is an issue by slotting into a corner freeing up space when the bath used to be (if you choose to get rid of it of course), and giving more room to manoeuvre – especially useful if the user is in a wheelchair. Shower enclosures are usually made with glass doors so the bathroom won’t feel cramped. They are also much easier to keep clean, and look and feel more modern.
Many people choose to have shower enclosures installed in their bathrooms for numerous reasons. Showers are quicker, use less water and often you feel much more refreshed stepping out of a shower than out of a bath. Shower trays also don’t have the big step into them and can often be installed at floor level so no step is needed at all, which greatly lowers the risk of tripping or slipping. The inclusion of a bath mat will also add the extra security for the user.
Bathroom grab bars can also be installed in the bathroom to make the room a much safer place to be for people with restricted mobility and the elderly. Grab bars are designed to give the user the support they need to move around the room without falling or slipping. Placed in strategic locations, such as by the toilet and in the shower, they give the user their independence by being able to use the bathroom alone. Able to take much more weight than normal hand rails, grab bars have easy grip handles so if they are grabbed, the person’s hand won’t slip off it and cause them to fall. Fold down seats in the shower enclosure, also give that extra bit of security and support if they aren’t able to stand for a long period of time.
Showers are much more user friendly for those people with mobility problems and the elderly, with the properly installed accessories such as grab bars and shower seats, they enable people to remain independent for much longer in their own homes, lowering the risk of accidents and injury, and generally making their bathroom a much safer place to be.