Improving Shower Safety for a Senior with Increased Fall Risk

Elder Care Aptos, CA: Improving Shower Safety for Seniors
Elder Care Aptos, CA: Improving Shower Safety for Seniors

Fall risk if very serious for elderly adults. It is a leading cause of debilitating injury and can even lead to death. As a family caregiver, it is essential to recognize the risks your parent faces and take steps to reduce those risks and protect your parent from potentially devastating consequences. For many elderly adults, these dangerous falls occur in the shower, which is why many seniors lose their ability to bathe independently early in their aging process. Fortunately, there are many ways you can improve safety for your senior so they can shower with greater confidence and independence.

Use these tips to improve shower safety for a senior with increased fall risk:

  • Ensure the floor is either textured to reduce slipperiness or covered with a towel or mat before your parent gets into the shower. This absorbs moisture and provides traction rather than becoming more slippery
  • If your parent struggles with getting in and out of the shower, consider replacing a conventional version with one designed with elderly adults in mind. These generally feature a very low threshold and a water-tight door to allow for easy entry and submersion to the shoulders
  • If replacing the shower isn’t a possibility, consider adding shower steps that make it easier for your parent to get in and out of the tub
  • Install grab bars throughout the bathroom, but particularly in the bath and shower. These bars provide support and leverage so your parent can more easily control their movements and keep themselves balanced. Be sure these are installed properly and rated for your senior’s weight
  • Add textured adhesive shapes or a slip-resistant mat to the bottom of the tub to provide more protection against slipping
  • Encourage your parent to use a shower bench or seat that will let them sit down while bathing. This helps to reduce dangers associated with common shower movements such as lifting their feet
  • Store bath products on shelves at your parent’s reaching level or attached to the wall. This eliminates the need for leaning or bending
  • Install a handheld shower head so your parent can rinse easily without potentially dangerous movements

Approaching potentially sensitive tasks for your parent such as bathing, and toileting can be challenging and stressful for both of you. This can be particularly true if you were not prepared for these types of tasks or your parent has recently suffered an injury or illness that makes this type of care necessary. You don’t have to cope with this on your own. Elder care can help you through this challenge and ensure your parent gets all the care they need in a way that is respectful, dignified, and provided with their individual needs and independence in mind. An elderly home care services provider can take over just this task to reduce stress and enhance your parent’s care, or several tasks to open your schedule and offer diversified care that is meaningful and beneficial.

If you or your loved one is looking for Elder Care or Placement Services in Aptos, CA, please call Familiar Surroundings Home Care.

Santa Clara County: (408) 979-9990  

San Mateo County: (650) 353-9777 

Santa Cruz County: (831) 480-3990 

Laura Wentling

Laura has been involved in the home care industry for more than 20 years. She knows all the aspects of the business and what it takes to provide excellent customer service. Her ability to focus on clients and personal attendants on an individual basis makes her an outstanding leader. Marinating a standard of professionalism and quality with her administrative staff and personal attendants through direct interaction, is a goal which Laura strives to meet daily. Laura is a "hands on" partner and is always available to meet with both our clients and personal attendants when needed.
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