Bathrooms pose many challenges for those with mobility issues. The presence of slick surfaces that are frequently damp turns a quick trip to the bathroom into a potentially dangerous experience.
You may already know that the bathroom is where most in-home accidents happen. A specific problem for many people is getting in and out of the shower.
Those with mobility problems and the elderly struggle the most and are frightened to shower because they fear falling. Being afraid to shower is no way for anyone to live. Fortunately, renovating showers to make them fully accessible is a common practice.
A disabled shower removes the dangerous impediments found in typical bathrooms. Additionally, modifications include features for ease of access and improved stability. Showers will have non-slip surfaces, and conveniently placed grab bars as standard features. Other enhancements will vary based on individual circumstances and mobility needs.
Depending on your degree of mobility, making your shower a walk-in might be a more significant help than you can imagine. Entering and exiting your shower with no edges to navigate over is crucial for your safety.
Shower Ramp for the Disabled
Very much like the walk-in shower, a shower with a ramp makes accessing the shower a lot easier. A manageable incline is a key to this modification.
Shower Chair on Wheels
For some people, a walk-in shower does not provide enough assistance. If walking into the shower is a problem, you may need to consider a shower chair on wheels. These come in many varieties. From simple water-resistant and mesh chairs to reclining water-resistant transport chairs, we can help you find the best option for you.
Disabled Shower Seat
There are a number of styles of accessible shower seats. Aside from individual preference, it is vital that the seat fits well in the area where it is used and that the person using the seat does not exceed the seat’s maximum weight.
Disabled Folding Shower Seat
A shower seat that folds out of the way is very helpful, especially when space is an issue. This shower seat will take very little space and can be tucked into a corner until needed.
Disabled Shower Seat Wall Mounted
An option that many of our clients like is the wall-mounted shower seat. These usually come in styles that are folded against the wall when not in use and those that sit open.
Shower Head for Disabled Person
Many people with limited mobility benefit from handheld shower attachments. Some include a wall-mounted attachment as well. The best ones have settings for water pressure and easy to use controls.
Disabled Shower Rail
Shower rails and grab bars are critical for safety. There are several types. Some are wall-mounted others are moveable.
Benefits of Installing an
Naturally, the most significant benefit to having a modified shower is the sense of safety for those with mobility problems. Additional benefits include,
- Trust in the product to function well with no unpleasant surprises
- Peace of mind for family members or caregivers
- Increase or maintain freedom for those who struggle with mobility
- Easy to clean materials and layouts
- Convenient for all family members to use
- An alert button if a problem happens
How We Can Help
After you contact us, an AccessAble Home Modifications expert will inspect your shower area and create a plan that will give you safe access to your shower. Additionally, we will address other necessary safety features in your bathroom.
The professionals at AccessAble Home Modification have 7+ years of experience installing disabled showers in Western Australia. We will focus on what you need and want as we make an accessibility plan. The final step in planning is to get the approval of a Registered Occupational Therapist.
What is a Disabled Shower?
By definition, a disabled shower is free from any obstructions. So, there would be no hob, no screen, and no lip on the floor of a disabled shower.
However, modifying a shower and making it somewhat accessible without it technically being a “disabled shower” is possible depending on a client’s needs.
For the most part, a truly disabled shower is usually only possible if the whole bathroom is modified/renovated due to the falls required to get rid of the water and the usual set-up of a typical bathroom.
What Sort of Tiles Do You Recommend for a Disabled Shower?
In a disabled shower, the best tiles are non-slip tiles because they make moving about much safer. Even if the client is in a wheelchair and uses a shower seat, they will transfer from one to the other. Additionally, if another person assists with showers, such as a caregiver, they will benefit from a safe non-slip surface.
For many years, non-slip tiles were very rough and looked commercial. They marked easily and were difficult to clean. However, we use a range of non-slip tiles that look good and are easy to clean.
What Sort of Shower Head Do You Recommend for a Disabled Shower?
While several types of showerheads can get the job done, we find that the best option is a shower head with a hose on a variance rail. We attach the vertical rail securely, and it serves as an extra grab rail if necessary. Using a shower hose and head is the safest for disabled showers because the height of the head can be adjusted and pulled off for ease of showering. These are valuable features if using the shower alone is an option or if someone is helping with showering.
Where Do Grab Rails Go in a Shower?
The safest set-up for grab rails in the shower is to start with installing a vertical variable height rail with a showerhead and hose. A horizontal grab rail often is beneath the vertical rail. On the next wall, we would install a horizontal grab bar. Adding one or two more horizontal rails can make sense depending on how large the shower is and set up. The standard horizontal grab rail sits 900-1000mm from floor level unless a different height is necessary.
Is an Attached Shower Seat Always Necessary?
Not every disabled bathroom must have a shower seat attached to the wall. The mobility of the person using the shower determines whether an attached shower seat is preferable to a free-standing shower commode and vice versa. A person who can safely transfer to a shower commode will not need an attached seat. However, the final decision in this matter will come after a consultation with a licensed occupational therapist.
What is the Best Sort of Shower Curtain in a Disabled Bathroom?
Generally, the job and relevant heights of the tiling dictate the necessary size of a shower curtain. There are times when using prefabricated shower rails and curtains works well. However, we often need shower curtains that are specific custom-made. Shower curtains are often 1800mm high, making them relatively short when there is no hob. Our preferred height for a shower curtain is a 2000mm tall curtain. These are usually available for purchase online or in some home improvement stores. It is typically possible to custom make a shower curtain to suit specific sizing.
As far as fabrics, a shower curtain made of vinyl is easy to clean, making it the best choice. These tend to be sturdy and easily cleaned with a disinfectant spray and water. Avoid shower curtains that have tiers of ruffles and frills. These can compromise safety if the material rips or gets tangled.