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5 Features of an Aging in Place Bathroom

5 Features of an Aging in Place Bathroom

  • bathroom remodeling
aging in place bathroom from McHales KBA in Pennsylvania

The U.S. CDC describes ‘aging in place’ as “the ability to live in one’s own home and community safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income, or ability level.” Remodeling for this kind of design is much different than remodeling for aesthetic or home value. If you worry that you’ll have to move because of age-related challenges with your home, check with McHales KBA. We can help you add features to your home that can help make it suitable for your aging body.

Here are five aging in place features that we can install in your bathroom:


First-floor bathroom

If your home has stairs, an easy way to reduce the risk of injury is to have a major bathroom on the first floor. Some older two-story homes only have a bathroom on the upper floor near the bedrooms. While this makes sense, it’s a problem for older residents, and chair lifts can only help so much. Depending on how much room you have on the first floor, it might be tough to get a bathroom in there. It might require the conversion of a room you don’t use too often or part of a large closet. Keep in mind that the large size is important for accommodating a walker or wheelchair.


Step-in tub or curbless shower

For younger people, stepping in or out of a tub usually isn’t too hard. However, it can be much more difficult for older people. Step-in tubs and curbless showers let you easily enter, even with a walker or wheelchair. There are other options as well, such as tubs with a watertight door. Whatever your option, you’ll want to look at how you’ll enter and exit it. A common idea is to install wall-mounted bars you can use to help you keep your balance.


Removable/Adjustable showerheads

Surprisingly, there’s a lot to consider about your showerhead. Some showerheads offer more than a simple spray, while others offer adjustable angles. Both of these features are very useful for older people. A good type of showerhead to consider is a removable showerhead. This kind of showerhead has a hose that hooks to where a normal showerhead would be, with spray adjustment options on the backside. This lets older users easily wash while staying safe.


Non-slip flooring and rugs/mats

You’ll want to consider choosing flooring that doesn’t get slippery when wet. Marble, for instance, is a poor choice, but there are tiles that are slightly rougher. These aren’t as slippery as a flat marble floor. In addition, laminate flooring is also a good choice for non-slip flooring. As for rugs and mats, they can help avoid slipping, but they can also be tripping hazards. Thinner rugs with a rubber backing are your best bet, while your tub/shower can have a textured bottom if you don’t want a mat in there. However, some bathrooms just aren’t meant for rugs or mats. A good rule of thumb is the tighter the bathroom, the more likely you’ll better off with a non-slippery floor.


Functional fixtures and accessories

When designing for aging in place, you should consider everything in the bathroom. The sink and light are fine for you now, but what about when you’re older? Consider things like pull-down shelves and lower cabinets for your bathroom. In addition, think about if you’ll be able to reach the faucets and controls for the sink or tub/shower. Everything in the shower should be close by so you can reach it easily. You’ll also want to consider the lighting. Sensor lights are good for those who have trouble turning or who might forget to turn it off. It’s also good to consider lights that are set lower so you can easily reach them in case they go out.


Why choose McHales KBA to help me design my bathroom?

For almost 70 years, McHales KBA has been helping homeowners of all ages design their kitchens and bathrooms. We’ve been around so long that we know how our clients’ needs change as they get older. Our company has been able to help them adjust to their changing lives while maintaining the independence they’re used to. If you’re looking to prepare for the future with an aging in place bathroom, call McHales KBA today!

By McHales Kitchen and Bath

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