The aim is to make your bathroom as safe as possible and to minimise all possible stress on your joints.
On average we use the bathroom 7-10 times a day, based on my research. Unfortunately though, many people who suffer with arthritis experience a loss of strength, mobility and grip – which can all be a problem in the bathroom.
Slips, falls and sometimes trips in the bathroom account for a substantial rate in people aged over 65, and significantly increases in those aged over 80.
Based on this, I have been doing my homework and trawling the internet and made some findings and tips on how to use the bathroom safely.
- Always ensure your bathroom is well-lit and has an easy to reach switch - or an easy to pull cord switch. Never ever use a bathroom in the dark, as you may not notice anything that is lying on the floor. Or worse still any wet patches/puddles.
Also ensure there are no shoes, clothes or electric cords lying on the way on your way to the bathroom , as these will easily trip you whilst in the dark.
- Non-slip surfaces are absolutely essential. As ceramic tiles, especially when wet, can be extremely slippery and dangerous. Therefore, non-slip bathroom mats, and non-slip mats in the shower and bath and in front of the toilet, are essential for anyone who has mobility issues. These are always reasonably priced to buy and can help you prevent sprains and fractures, which would no doubt immobilise you for weeks, maybe even months.
- A raised toilet seat will make it easier for you to sit on the toilet and also to get up from it. These daily living aids raise the toilet seat by about 10cm and can be usually clipped onto the existing toilet seat.
- Fitting Safety / Grab rails next to the toilet can help make it a lot easier for you to use your arms so that you can lower yourself slowly onto the toilet seat and off it again. These can be wall-mounted and will give you something secure to hold onto. Toilet levers are also easier to operate than push-buttons when flushing the toilet.