Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Ever since the commercial with the elder lady lying on the floor yelling, “I can’t get up” has more emphasis been placed on seniors choosing to age in place. Without breaking the budget it is possible to turn your loved ones space into a senior friendly environment that keeps them safe while allowing them the independence and freedom that they crave.
The one space to completely overhaul, if any, is the bathroom. Most accidents involving seniors occur in the bathroom. If your budget allows for it the best option is to take the existing space and tear it down to the studs. This will allow you to change the structural base of improvements.
Start with widening the door entrance to a width that easily accommodates a walker or wheel chair. From door to jam the opening should be at least thirty two inches. Change out the door and upgrade to a sliding door. This makes entry and exit even easier for seniors with mobility issues.
The next addition in renovating the bathroom space to accommodate aging in place is to install a shower that allows the user entry without a ledge. A zero entry, roll in shower is ideal for users dependent upon wheelchairs or walker. The best shower head to install for aging in place is one that can be removed. Hand held shower heads allow users to get into hard to reach places normal ones don’t reach. Install a built in seat in the shower as well. This will allow older people to get off their feet while showering if the extended standing is too much for them. Shower grab bars are essential on the walls to help with balance.
As we age the muscles in our legs start to weaken. To combat this install an elongated toilet that sits at least seventeen to nineteen inches off the ground. This will help ease the stress put on older legs when transitioning of getting on and off of the toilet. Installing grab bars that are accessible from the toilet are also beneficial to aging adults.
Bathroom flooring is another area that causes concerns when it comes to seniors. Tile options are often slick, carpet in a bathroom is not an ideal option and neither is wood or the use of throw rugs. Ceramic tile offers selections with added texture. This is an ideal flooring option to add to a bathroom remodel, especially in age in place remodeling.
Additional lighting, both natural and artificial should be added. Eye sight tends to fade as we age and extra lighting helps combat these issues.
Keeping our parents safe is our top priority while keeping their independence is of top priority to them; unite both in age in place remodeling.