When it comes to “bathroom accessibility,” there are a variety of reasons this may be a priority for you. You may have a loved one you want to help safely age in place. Perhaps you’re living with limited mobility. Or, you could just be planning so you’re prepared for the future when you need a little extra help.
No matter the reason, it’s possible to improve your bathroom safety without undergoing a costly remodel.
1. Good Lighting
Good lighting is crucial to bathroom accessibility. When a bathroom is poorly lit, it’s more difficult to navigate. This increases the potential for tripping, falling, and suffering a severe injury.
Take a look at the existing light setup and consider whether or not there’s enough light to easily see as one moves around. Be sure to remember that not everyone’s eyesight is as good as yours. Also, how easy are the controls for the lights? Can they be accessed even by someone in a wheelchair? It’s not just enough for there to be enough light when the lights are turned on. You or your loved one must be able to reach those lights.
2. Safety Bars
Balancing is another major concern in the bathroom — especially when trying to rise from a seated position or crossing a wet and slippery floor. Grab bars can provide the critical extra support needed to stay balanced.
3. Foot Traction
Like safety bars, having adequate traction underfoot can help you avoid slipping and falling. Sometimes something as simple as a floor mat can give you the additional help required. If it’s difficult to lift your feet high enough so as not to trip on the floor mat, updating your flooring with a textured material is another good option.
4. Barrier-Free Shower
Getting into and out of the shower is one of the most common ways individuals injure themselves in the bathroom. Even a small lip to the shower wall adds a level of difficulty to moving into and out of the shower. Give yourself the easy access you need by upgrading your shower to a barrier-free entry.