Elderly Bathroom: 10 Important Tips for Bathroom Safety
Elderly Bathroom: 10 Important Tips for Bathroom Safety
Creating a safe, elderly bathroom is dependent on providing the best in bathroom safety equipment and in adhering to good design elements. Here are 10 important safety tips to remember.

The combination of tile or some other type of smooth, hard surface, along with water and electricity, make the bathroom the most dangerous room in 
the house. In fact, seniors and the elderly are involved in over 
two-thirds of all bathroom accidents. 

Bathroom safety is a serious concern for those who must care 
for the elderly, or for seniors who live along. With these few 
elderly bathroom safety tips, you can keep your elderly friends 
and loved ones much safer at home as they age in place

10 Important Safety Tips for Elderly Bathrooms

1. Install grab bars near the toilet as well as the bathtub and 
shower. Grab bars enable the elderly or disabled to balance 
as they either sit on the toilet or enter or exit the bathtub or 
shower. Having a handicap grab bar allows them to brace against something and aids them in keeping their balance. Remember to install grab bars in wall studs. 

2. Put a night light in disabled bathrooms for the elderly. Often, the elderly become disoriented in the dark. Placing a night light in the bathroom ensures they will not bump against the sink, accidentally fall into the tub or miss the toilet and land on the floor. Use a gentle LED night light that will illuminate the bathroom without blinding the user as he or she moves from dark to light. Consider placing night lights in the hallway as well. 

3. Install emergency pull cords and emergency call buttons in the bathroom. Emergency call buttons and emergency pull cords can be a lifesaver. This type of bathroom safety equipment can also help to eliminate accidents, as people are more likely to push a button or pull a cord for assistance rather than call out for help. 

4. Remove any rug or bath mat that does not have a non-skid backing. Regular area rugs can slide on tile, linoleum and wood. By only using non-skid rugs and mats, you are eliminating the potential for an accidental fall. If you find a bath mat or rug you particularly like that comes without a non-skid backing, invest in non-skid tape and apply it to the back. If you have particularly slick floors, consider other disabled bathroom flooring solutions for the best protection. 

5. Toilet safety rails and raised toilet seats prevent accidents from occurring as the elderly get on and off the handicap toilet. Raised toilet seats mean they do not have to lower themselves as far down. Toilet safety rails give them balance and provide rails to push up on. 

6. Keep all electrical appliances out of the bathroom. If electric razors or hair dryers are needed, find a space in the bedroom for them, if possible. Space heaters do not belong in anyone's bathroom, much less the elderly. 

7. Bath transfer benches allow the elderly to enter a handicap bathtub without the risk of a slip and fall. Look for handicap shower chairs and tub transfer benches with adjustable legs. The bath safety bench can then be raised or lowered depending on the height of the tub. 

8. Place anti-skid products on the floor and in the tub or shower. In addition to non-skid bath mats and non-skid rugs, place non-skid decals and runners or plastic mats in the bathtub and shower. Anyone can slip and fall in a slick tub or shower, regardless of age. In addition to placing non-skid bath mats in front of the tub, place them in front of the toilet and in front of the sink to provide traction. 

9. Set the water heater to 120 degrees or lower. Most burns and scalds occur when the water heater temperature is set higher than 120 degrees. By lowering the temperature, you are saving the elderly and the young from receiving a nasty burn. 

10. Throw out all old prescriptions. In fact, do not keep any medications in the medicine cabinet. The heat and steam can affect the strength of prescriptions. Old prescriptions could also be taken accidentally. 

Implement these elderly bathroom remodeling tips in an accessible bathroom and ensure that your loved one can spend more quality time in his or her own home. 

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