Community Blog

Safety Checklist for Your Senior's Bathroom

By Amy Felman

The bathroom can be a particularly dangerous room of the home. Because of an environment that tends to be wet and slippery, many injuries, particularly falls, occur in the bathroom each year. As a family caregiver, it is very important that you recognize potential dangers in your parent's bathroom, and take the necessary steps to resolve them. This will help your aging parent to avoid potentially serious accidents and injuries that can negatively impact their health and quality of life. By making their bathroom safer, you can also make it easier for you to provide assistance for their personal care.

Use the safety checklist to ensure your parent's bathroom is safe:

  • A smooth tile or linoleum floor can become extremely slick and slippery when wet or has spills, which are common in the bathroom. A textured floor is safer and reduces the risk of falls
  • If you are not able to replace the flooring, place towels on the floor for your parent to walk on to reduce the risk of falls
  • Ensure there are grab bars positioned throughout the room to provide support while your parent is walking around. Make sure they are positioned properly, and that they can support your parent's weight
  • Remove weak towel rods so your parent is not tempted to try to use it for support, which could result in it breaking and leading to a serious fall
  • Consider an elevated toilet that makes it easier for your parent to sit and stand when using it
  • Add handlebars on either side of the toilet for your parent to use for balance and leverage when using the restroom
  • Avoid leaving sharp implements such as razors, or hot implements such as curling irons out on the counter where they may injure your parent
  • Add a bench or chair to the bathroom so your parent can sit when doing tasks such as shaving, brushing their hair, or brushing their teeth

Challenges with personal care tasks can be some of the most difficult for your aging parent to deal with. They may struggle with embarrassment or discomfort, and may not be open to you assisting them. Not only can this cause both of you stress, and put tension in your relationship, but it can also cause your parent to not ask for your help, which can put them at risk of injury, illness, and other consequences. One such personal care task is toileting. Balance problems, mobility issues, and other difficulties can make it harder for your parent to be able to use the restroom safely, effectively it, and in a healthy way independently. Fortunately, an elderly care provider can offer the support and assistance needed for your parent to stay safe and healthy while fulfilling this personal care need. Through their respectful, dignified, and professional assistance, your senior can avoid the discomfort that may be associated with you handling this task, and can also remain protected from issues such as falls, incontinence, and infections.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring elderly care in Mars, PA, please call the caring staff at Home Helpers. Call today (412) 201-0712.