What Can We Learn for Aging in Place Home Bathrooms from an ADA Bathroom Walk Through?

In this video, Ability Action’s resident OT, Reese Himmer, OT-R, ATP, HAST (Certified Home Assessment and Safety Therapist), will cover the following aspects of an ADA bathroom:
-What does an ADA bathroom look like?
-What lessons for home bathrooms can we use and which can we ignore?
-Key tips on making a bathroom safe.

Have questions on this video or aging in place? Email us at info@abilityaction.com or check our website at www.abilityaction.com

How to Avoid Falling While Taking a Shower

The shower is one of the most dangerous places in your house. Not only is the flooring usually more slippery in the bathroom to begin with, but, when we take a shower, things tend to get wet, making everything even more slippery. All of this makes it much more likely to have a fall while in the shower than during many other activities around your house.

Since it’s also nice to get clean, we want you to be able to do so as safely and independently as possible, which is why we wanted to tell you about this shower caddy. This type of shower caddy is best suited for people who stand up to take a shower. If it’s no longer safe for you to stand to shower, or if you have any questions about what the best set up is for you so that you can bathe safely, we recommend consulting with an occupational therapist. If your therapist can see your home and your specific bathroom, they will be able to give you advice tailored to your exact situation.

If you do stand to take a shower, we want to mention that a shower caddy is just one small piece of an overall system that can help make your shower safer. You should also make sure you have something on the floor of the shower, like a shower mat, which can add some friction and reduce your chance of falling. You might also want to consider having a grab bar or two installed as well so that you have something sturdy to grab onto if you do start to fall.

Ability Action Aging In Place: One method to avoid falling in the shower is by using a  Rustproof Shower Caddy

While it is impossible to fully eliminate the chance of falling, it is possible to reduce that risk by making your shower set up as safe as possible. One of the main advantages of using a shower caddy is that it lets you put all of your supplies within arm’s reach so that you do not have to bend down to pick up the things that you need. When you bend down two things can happen that are potentially unsafe. First, you could throw yourself off balance when you bend over, and, second, you could get water in your eyes. Since vision is closely related to balance, getting water in your eyes can also cause you to lose your balance. Don’t try this at home, but just to show you an example of this: If I keep my eyes open and stand on one foot, I can keep my balance relatively easily. However, if I close my eyes and then stand on one foot, you can see that it’s definitely harder for me to maintain my balance. Therefore, if using a shower caddy helps you avoid bending and avoid getting water in your eyes, it can help you stay a bit safer while you shower. We also like that this shower caddy is rust-proof because it will last longer and look nicer than one that is not rust-proof. We have tried the ones that are not rust-proof and we had to replace them much more quickly. Even the rust-proof ones do get a little bit of rust where the pieces connect, but we have found that this happens to a much lesser degree.

If you want to give this shower caddy a try to see if it will work for you, you can find a link to it here. Note these are not affiliate links, just links to products we think make sense. Also, don’t forget to also get a shower mat and possibly some grab bars installed so that you can stay as safe and independent as possible when you shower.

Once you get the shower caddy, you can just hang it over the head of your shower, then put the toiletries you need onto the shower caddy. Different showers may be arranged differently, so you will want to make sure the shower caddy will work in your shower before you purchase it.