• Wellness Center
  • Bathroom Safety Aids Buying Guide

    Build a safer bathroom. Whether you're a caregiver or need assistance yourself, find products and strategies that may help you improve mobility and increase and independence.

  • When providing care for a loved one or overcoming personal physical obstacles, it’s important to balance a desire for independence with the need for safety. The bathroom is usually the most challenging room to navigate for someone with limited mobility, but you can find peace of mind with products designed to help with safe use of the bathroom. From providing support to reducing slips, available bathroom safety aids include no-slip mats and grab bars, as well as benches, chairs and stools for the tub or shower.

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    Tips for Buying Bathroom Aids

    1. Measure the bathroom. First things first: when it comes time to shop for bathroom safety aids, start by accurately measuring the bathroom where you need to install the aids. Don’t forget to measure the height and width of the toilet seat, the size of the step into the tub or shower, and any wall spaces where you want to locate grab bars.
    2. Assess what bath safety aids you need. Evaluate the mobility restrictions of the person you’re equipping the bathroom for and critically examine every corner for areas where safety aids could help. Pay special attention to both the toilet and how easy it is to get in and out of the tub or shower.
    3. Consider the options for safe toilet use. Raised toilet seats are a common bath safety aid. They come in different sizes — some with handles and some without —and vary in how they attach to your toilet. Some raised toilet seats are designed to attach and detach easily, while permanent seats replace the standard toilet seat entirely to make it more stable. A bedside commode is another option to improve independence.
    4. Temporary vs. permanent grab bars. Factors to consider when choosing grab bars include how long you need them and how often they will be used. For example, some grab bars attach with suction and can be temporarily installed on a shower wall or tub area. However, these temporary bars aren’t as stable as permanent grab bars, which are screwed into wall studs. Temporary bars may also have a weight limit, while permanent bars can offer more options as far as size and shape. Some are even curved to provide more surfaces to grab.
    5. Get set up for seated showers. Whether you have a shower stall or a standard bathtub, showering in the seated position is usually the safest option. Consider adding a handheld shower wand and a bench or stool for comfort and safety. There are also transfer benches to help someone get in and out of the tub or shower safely. When buying bath benches and shower chairs, review the weight ratings and decide whether you need handles, armrests or a back. Look at how easy the bench is to install (or setup, if it’s temporary) and make sure you have grab bars nearby.
    6. Provide a no-slip surface in the tub or shower. To help prevent falls, no-slip mats provide a stable, slip-free surface during a shower and while getting in and out of the tub or shower stall. In fact, no-slip mats are helpful bath aids for everyone, not just those with mobility restrictions.

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    Read the Caregiver Buying Guide

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