Shower options designed specifically for the benefit of infirmed people as well as for the elderly can come as an over-bath shower. You install and use them within a bathtub. They can also come separate within your shower cubicle or as an open wetroom or shower area.
These options often come with their own array of pros and cons. But different circumstances will also take a role in determining the best and the most practical option one should decide on.
So what are the prime deciding factors when shopping for moulded shower options and other types of disability equipment for the bath area?
- What facilities do you have and how much space is available in your shower room?
- What are your strong physical abilities compared to the amount of support you are looking for/need?
- What are your body size and overall weight?
- What is the projected cost for the installation?
Perhaps what can be considered as one of the most cost-effective approaches to optimizing the use of a bathtub is by installing over-bath showers on them. It may be used by everyone else but can be taken advantage of also by people with varying degrees of infirmity. In addition, the elderly can take advantage of them, too.
Over-bath showers involves having your shower system unit plumbed with its own water supply or attaching it to a bathwater intake. Installation, though, would require good plumbing work.
As for the shower controls, they would be wall fitted, just above the bathroom tap system. Ideally, at a height that is most comfy for you to reach. If you are under the guidance of a caregiver, the control unit can be installed instead outside of the bath area, for their sake and easy reach.
If you decide to take advantage of this option, you may need to climb yourself over the bath side, and from there you can remain standing safely whilst enjoying a refreshing shower. Another option is to make use of a board.
You can also set up a seat just across the top of the bath, for you to sit on whilst showering. With this, we encourage you to install handy grab rails. They will provide the additional support you need, and will also aid you up in transferring in/out of your bath area.
Shower cubicles can be designed to house a toilet so they are included within the unit. They are more popularly known to many of us as “showerloos”.
What you do here is either take a sit on the toilet so you can enjoy a shower. Or have a ramp or level access to the same. You can also opt for an over-toilet shower chair, but this may sometimes come with a washbasin.
Installing a shower toilet is most ideal to have if your bath area has a limited amount of space for a separate shower area and toilet. It is also a sound solution to have in case the intended user finds it difficult or time-consuming to access your toilet and bath area. You can have it installed in a corner nearest to their room.
The toilet can work with the help of a macerating unit. This can be most helpful as far as siting it anywhere in the house is concerned. So, this makes it clear that you can have this not just near the existing sump pipe for your toilet area.
Stepped Access Trays
Standard plumber merchants and DIY chains see this type of shower tray as one of the most sought after. But because they come with high threshold steps, they won’t be suitable for the majority of users.
Stepped access trays usually come installed with retaining “barriers”. You will normally see this at the lower front edge which helps in keeping water from flowing out to the surrounding bathroom floor. This barrier necessitates that you have sufficient mobility of the body and a sense of balance to step over it.
While you can transfer yourself from a wheelchair onto, say, an extended seat, a level access tray or ramp will make things more seamless, easier, and safer for you.
Another advantage of a shower or bath step is it allows you to split the height step into the cubicle into two separate steps.
If you are thinking of installing a moulded shower system at home for the exclusive use of a particular household member, we strongly encourage you to check out all options you have first. Perform a comparative analysis of all available options, so you can be assured that what you will decide on will give good value for your money.