According to a 2014 report from the Public Health Agency of Canada, injuries from falls are a leading cause of hospitalization for seniors, often resulting in a decreased quality of life or death. 20-30% of Canadian seniors are injured this way, with half of all falls occurring in the home. Falling hazards in the home include slippery floors; poorly designed tubs, toilets and fixtures; and lack of aids like grab bars.

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The number of falls and hospitalizations is increasing every year. This is due to an aging population, with many of them on medications that may affect their vision, balance, alertness and reaction time. Fortunately, there are preventative steps we can take to reduce the risk of falls. Bathroom adaptations that specifically address the hazards associated with tubs, toilets and floors, increase bathroom mobility and safety.

Here’s a list of bathroom adaptations for seniors and people with disabilities:

  • Tub to Shower Conversion
  • Assistive Devices such as handheld shower, shower seat, safety pole and grab bars at appropriate locations
  • Replacing standard height toilet to Comfort Height Toilet
  • Slip Resistant Flooring
  • New Vanity to accommodate more drawers for accessibility
  • Handi Glides adapted to existing vanity for accessibility
  • Single Handle faucet for mobility and comfort
  • LED lighting to improve visibility
  • Door levers instead of door knobs for mobility and comfort
  • Bathtub Cut-Away Access

Falls can be devastating to the individual but they also affect the family, friends and the support network around them. Pre-planning for prevention will allow seniors and people with disabilities to stay mobile, move around more safely and live independently for longer in their own homes.