Do you wonder how to create an accessible bathroom
Homes should absolutely work for the people who live in them.
I think this is true for all people; for children, disabled people, older people and people who have any kind of additional needs. Homes are our haven, our harbour and our most treasured place. They are where we should be able to relax.
Our homes should be designed to meet our needs and enable us to be safe and comfortable.
When it comes to bathrooms there is a lot that can be done to think creatively to meet additional needs.
When my children were small we would have steps up to the toilet and to the wash basin. We would place a baby bath in the bath and we would have non slip mats. We would also have a cap on the hot water tap so it could not go above a certain temperature.
We always supervised of course but as far as we could we made out bathroom useable for our little people so they could be as independent as possible. We always appreciated little toilets and hand basins when we went out and toilet roll they could actually reach.
Other tips for making a bathroom safer for children could include installing a toilet lid lock, always putting down the toilet lid and maybe even putting a cushioned cover over the bath taps so they won’t get hurt if they bump their head against it.
Older people may need their bathroom’s adjusting slightly to meet their needs too, particularly if they are unsteady on their feet. Grab bars make rising from the toilet so much easier. Non slip mats are increasingly important. A walk-in bath could be a fantastic solution. You can now even get baths that have reclining powered seats so someone can have a full bath experience even if they do not have the mobility to lie themselves down safely. Isn’t that just awesome?
Sometimes technology plays such a useful part in people’s lifeless and when it comes to accessibility it can have such benefits. My grandmother in law is 97 and she has a device that switches off lights and opens doors for her (she is a wheelchair user) and this enables her to stay independent in her home. Just amazing.
Depending on a person’s disability a bathroom may require adjustment in a variety of ways. Walk in showers, hoists and raised toilets may be options to consider. You may require bath boards or transfer benches. You may require doors widening and lights lowering for people who use wheelchairs,. You may want to install an intercom system or an emergency pull cord. There are lots of things to consider and often simple solutions.
Meeting the needs of the people who inhabit it is, I feel, the most important function of well designed home.
Sometimes as needs change, as we get older perhaps or have children, we need to do are make small adaptations to a home to make it still work. It is about thinking creatively, exploring innovative products and making an assessment of safety and of need. We just need to think outside the box sometimes and be prepared to make adaptations in order to make our homes accessible.