Aging is an unavoidable fact of life. Australia’s population growth has given rise to a larger senior sector and the need for a huge aged-care overhaul. Many seniors prefer a stay-at-home situation to an aged-care facility. Can this preference become an achievable reality? Many individuals and relevant organisations are actively seeking improvements to in-home care and related support services. Australia’s 2018 Budget revealed the largest focus on aged care in six years. This was intensified by the Federal Government allocating $1.6 billion dollars to aged care and supporting older adults at home.
With all of this in mind, WHO Bathroom Warehouse offers some insight into making your home’s bathroom senior-friendly. While some of us grow older without too many complications, others face obstacles such as loss of mobility and strength. The bathroom can be particularly hazardous for those with physical impairments. However, with the right modifications, the bathroom can become a safe and secure retreat for older adults and caregivers.
There’s plenty to consider when designing or adapting a bathroom to suit varying mobility requirements. What type of fixtures and fittings are available? Do you need full or partial conversions? Do you have to sacrifice style for functionality? WHO Bathroom Warehouse can answer these questions with a number of simple ideas and solutions to help you create a stylish, safe and, appropriate bathroom for seniors.
Grab Bars & Rails
This is one of the easiest and more cost-effective ways to make your bathroom safer and more manageable for older adults. Grab bars and rails are extremely useful in the shower, near the toilet and, around the bathtub. Make sure bars and rails are easy to reach. WHO has 300mm and 600mm grab bars and rails in stock. For your convenience, WHO can also source many other shapes and sizes.
A walk-in shower with a single panel shower screen is a good option. You can also create a ‘wet area’ in the bathroom. This entails water-proofing and tiling the floor as well as the walls. There is no hob, level change or, any other type of barrier to the ‘wet area’. Regardless of shower form, entrance and interior should be sized to accommodate a wheelchair, walker or, shower chair. Another helpful product is a detachable shower-head that you can hold in your hand. This eliminates the need to stand while showering. WHO can help outfit your senior-friendly shower with an exclusive range of suitable designer products. Take a look at WHO’s frameless shower screens at http://store.whobathroomwarehouse.com.au/frameless/
A bath offers the opportunity to relax and rejuvenate. A walk-in bathtub is an ideal solution for those with greater physical impairment. Walk-ins have a door on the side, a built-in seat and, are taller than average bathtubs. Their appearance and style have vastly improved over the years. For those who don’t require so much assistance, the built-in bath is a good alternative. Grab bars and rails can be secured to the walls and the side of the bath. WHO’s extensive range of designer built-in baths are suitable for a variety of tastes and senior requirements. Browse the selection at http://store.whobathroomwarehouse.com.au/built-in-baths/
Toilet & Bidet
A raised toilet seat makes it much easier for seniors to sit down. These toilet seats usually raise the height by three to four inches and are fitted to a traditional toilet. Many raised toilet seats are equipped with grip bars. Grip rails can be attached to the wall for extra support or when the raised seat has no grip bars. WHO has an exclusive selection of designer toilets that are suitable for a raised seat. A bidet is another clever option for an accessible toilet and WHO are local distributors for Coway & Eco Bidets. For WHO’s exclusive range of toilets go to http://store.whobathroomwarehouse.com.au/toilets/.
Wall-Mounted Benchtops & Lowered Vanities
Some people prefer two vanities. One at standard height and one lowered to accommodate someone seated. This is one way to meet the needs of everyone. Regardless, wall-mounted benchtop vanities are better suited to seniors as they often have space beneath for a wheelchair or regular chair. Make sure the mirror extends to the top of the vanity for easier visibility. Check out WHO’s designer selection of vanities and benchtops at warehouse prices – http://store.whobathroomwarehouse.com.au/vanities/.
Many older adults eventually lose strength and mobility in their hands. Lever mixer tapware is a far better choice than twist and turn faucets. Thankfully, lever mixer taps have become extremely popular. There are loads of styles and colours to choose from. The sleek appearance of a lever tap adds a touch of class to any bathroom. Browse through WHO’s impressive range of exclusive designer tapware – http://store.whobathroomwarehouse.com.au/tapware/.
Tile selection is very important if your bathroom undergoes a complete refurbishment. When it comes to both floors and walls, a rougher texture tile provides a better grip and resists slipping. Non-slip bath mats reduce the risk of falling and allow seniors to easily manoeuvre around the bathroom. There are also non-slip mats designed specifically for use in the bathtub and shower. Nowadays, you can find non-slip bath mats in a variety of chic styles and attractive colours.
For some people, the aging process reduces the ability to see well in low light. While dimmer lighting can create a serene atmosphere in your bathroom it’s not ideal for impaired vision. Consider brighter radiance and additional illumination for ease of sight and to help prevent accidents. A separate light in the shower can be beneficial and don’t forget a lighting option for late-night bathroom visits.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to make a bathroom safer and more practical for the older age group. Making alterations will allow independence for as long as required. Style doesn’t need to be sacrificed as there are many tasteful modification choices. You can make your senior-friendly bathroom as beautiful as it is accessible.
WHO Bathroom Warehouse has an exclusive range of designer bathroom fittings and accessories at warehouse prices. Stock is ready for immediate pickup and interest-free finance is available. Visit one of WHO’s wholesale discount warehouse outlets or shop online. Please note, as the focus of this article has been on special needs for seniors, some items are not held in stock. However, WHO’s obliging staff will happily source relevant products for you such as raised toilet seats or bidets.
Aged care funding and services might be a possibility for you. The following links will take you to the relevant government information:
For further bathroom advice and assistance, talk to our friendly WHO team!