Busy caregivers get interrupted frequently, which makes checklists an easy way to make sure you haven’t missed anything. Some of these tips might need to be on your bathroom safety checklist.
Install Grab Bars in the Tub and Near the Toilet
The toilet area and the tub or shower stall are two of the spots in a bathroom in which your senior is likely to be the most vulnerable. If you can install grab bars in these areas, then your elderly family member can use them for leverage and for balance when she might not be feeling as stable. Be sure to use wall anchors and to install grab bars as securely as possible
Add Shower Stools and Soap Dispensers
While your elderly family member is bathing, keeping her balance might require all of her attention. This is why soap and shampoo dispensers can be useful. Also, consider adding a shower stool or bench to the tub. This allows your elderly family member to have a safe spot to rest in while she bathes.
Check Lighting To and From the Bathroom
If the lighting to and from the bathroom is dim, your senior might be in danger of falling on her way there, too. Night lights are a good option to keep dim hallways well lit. You might also consider using motion sensors to turn lights on when someone enters that space.
Clean Spills and Soap Buildup Regularly
Water on the bathroom floor isn’t always easy to spot and it can make for a painful fall, too. Keep extra towels handy so that you can use them to quickly mop up spills or at least “mark” a puddle for you to come back to as soon as you can. Soap and shampoo buildup in the shower is also extremely slippery, so it’s a good idea to start using a cleaning product that cuts through that buildup as regularly as you can.
Choose Non-slip Bath Mats
There are tons of adorable bath mats out there, but if they don’t have a rubberized or non-slip backing, they can prompt a fall in the bathroom. Make sure that any bath mats or rugs you use in the bathroom aren’t going to slip and slide. At the very least, consider using carpet tape to secure them to the floor.
If you’re having trouble figuring out whether any other changes would help your senior to be safer, consider hiring elderly care providers. They can work with you to help your elderly loved one be safer at home and take over some of the tasks that might take your attention away from safety.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elderly Care Services in Munhall PA, please call and talk to the caring staff at Extended Family Care of Pittsburgh at (412) 693-6009. We will answer all of your questions.
Laura has earned her MBA in Health Care Administration from Canisius College, a Bachelor of Science degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and is currently a CPR/First Aid Instructor for the American Red Cross. Laura has sat on three Professional Advisory Committees throughout the community, has been on the Board of Directors for a non-profit nursing home, currently acts as an Advisory Board Member for the Allegheny County Respite Care Coalition, Gateway Health Plan, and the North Allegheny School District Elementary Advisory Council. She is also an active committee member of the Southwestern PA Partnership on Aging, Twilight Wish Foundation and Marshall Elementary Yearbook Committee.
Raising four active children with her husband Brian, she seems to spend more time on baseball and soccer fields than she does at home which helps her appreciate their family vacation time even more.