January is National Bath Safety Month and as a family caregiver, there might be some things you’ll want to review in your parent’s bathroom to make sure he has the proper tools to stay safe. Bathrooms are one of the places seniors suffer the worst falls, so setting your parent’s bathroom(s) up safely is a great way to prevent injury and even death.
Not being able to see where he’s stepping can lead to a twisted ankle or a fall as your parent uses the bathroom. Make sure all lightbulbs are working and consider adding in a night light for any middle of the night visits.
If your parent’s bathroom has a bathmat or rug on the floor, make sure it is well secured and will not create a tripping hazard. It’s easy for toes to get caught under the edge of a rug that has turned up corners. Also, have your senior care provider help by making sure all clothes and debris are always picked up off the floor in your parent’s bathroom(s).
While a well waxed floor can be a thing of beauty, you don’t want bathroom flooring that will cause your parent to slip and fall when entering in the middle of the night in just his socks or bare feet. Make sure the floor covering is non-slip. In addition, bathtub and shower bottoms can be extremely slippery when they’re wet and covered with soap or shampoo. Some easy non-stick stickers can be applied to these areas to prevent feet from slipping out from under your parent. This easy do-it-yourself project can be completed by you or your senior care provider if you provide her some basic instructions.
Your aging parent may need extra support as he is getting in and out of the tub or as he is getting on and off the toilet. Look for products that you can purchase that will make it easy for your parent to perform these duties on his own. Bathtub safety grab bars and/or bars you attach to a toilet seat (or around the toilet seat) can give your parent a place to grab ahold of and provide the extra leverage he needs to use these facilities. For even more support, you can apply gripping tape to the surfaces of these grab bars so that even if your parent’s hands are greasy due to lotion or shampoo, he will easily be able to hold onto them for support.
A needed hand
If your parent needs extra help getting in and out of the tub for baths, consider hiring a senior care provider to be at the home when it’s bath time. Your senior care provider can assist in getting your parent to the bathroom, in and out of the tub, as well as make sure he has what he needs nearby (such as a change of clothes or his hygiene products), making it a safe bath time for him.
If you or an aging loved one is considering senior care in Howell, NJ, please contact the caring staff at Care Street Home Care today. Call (732) 607-8870.