If you are about to undertake a bathroom renovation and you are in your fifties, you might like to think about features that will help you as you creep towards old age. It is at that time of life that your joints start to become less flexible, and you groan every time you stand or sit. You know who you are!
The good news is that thanks to some incredible designs, your bathroom needn’t look like it belongs in a hospital or old folks home. Many of the features I am about to suggest can be retro-fitted too, so don’t feel as if you must include them right now.
Here are my essential bathroom ideas for the elderly.
Without a doubt, the number one feature on the list must be a walk in bath. Their style and quality do not suffer in the name of functionality. They require no special installation techniques either; you can install it as a DIY project. Enhance it with thermostatic taps so that it fills at just the right temperature for the user. It is not easy to regulate the hot and cold mix when you are in the bath.
Image Credit: Reggie35
The Sink and Taps
You might already have some bathroom vanity ideas in mind, but think about the taps too. Many older people find it difficult to turn them on and off. If you install lever taps, they do away with the problem altogether. Because they are available on high-quality fittings, they will not compromise the design of your room.
The floor must be waterproof and practical; as it should be in any bathroom. It might be a good idea to put down a non-slip product for the elderly because those are prone to fall more than younger folk. You will find a suitable vinyl product in your local showroom that comes in many designs and shades.
If you have room, fit a double cubicle to accommodate two fold-up seats. Mount one on the wall under the shower and one at the other end of the space. The elderly need a place to sit and wash in safety.
When you need them, you can install safety handrails. They must go on the wall over the bath, by the side of the toilet, and in the shower cubicle. There may be other places in your room that will benefit from a rail; that is your choice.
A raised toilet seat will help too; it gets difficult to stand and sit as you age. They are removable, so you can store it out of sight and just get it out when you need it.
Perhaps you have an elderly relative who will enjoy from some of these ideas now. Items such as the walk-in bath are expensive, but things such as the handrails and toilet seat cost little. They can make your visitor feel comfortable and confident in your home. You never know; they may visit you more often than before now that your bathroom is more convenient to use. We all need to do what we can.