The accommodation we’re referring to is accessibility. Accessibility is extremely if you plan to serve as host to guests of all ages and levels of physical ability – it can be difficult to meet the needs of pregnant nieces and proud great-grandparents alike. This quick guide will help you cover the basics.
Analyzing the Accessibility of Your Layout
Determining the overall cost of the project requires analyzing a few key points. Are the tub, toilet, and sink spaced far enough apart to allow walker or wheelchair access? Is there room for a changing table for young parents, or enough room to wash a baby or comb the children’s hair in the morning? Big improvements can increase home value and provide accessibility but sometimes there just isn’t room in the budget for everything.
Wide doorways are preferable. Ensure there are cabinets available that are not too high or too low – reaching and bending are uncomfortable for short and tall people respectively. Is there room underneath the sink for a wheelchair? An expensive pedestal model might help free up space and can provide more accessibility for everyone. Simplicity is best. Save room by looking to foldout work surfaces or utilize a guest bedroom closet for extra storage.
Qualities of an Accessible Bathtub/Shower
An accessible place to bathe is crucial for any overnight stay. Walk-in showers are great for older guests who can benefit from standing or using the shower chair, but parents of young children may not find the option very workable. The best way to make sure your tub is safe and accessible is to invest in a walk-in tub with a swinging door. Walk-in tubs are suitable for both showers and soaking baths.
Whichever option you choose, make sure to include the necessities: a handheld shower sprayer, grab bars on the inside and outside of the tub, and a low-threshold entrance. Invest in a portable shower chair so you can store it in the closet between uses. A portable transfer board and bath lift can serve as a part-time alternative to a walk-in tub.
Other Accessories and Improvements to Consider
Make sure the lighting is bright, but provide a softer light for better visibility at night. Get rid of any throw rugs that could pose a tripping hazard and invest in non-slip vinyl flooring instead. You may want to include other accessories such as a lockable space for prescription medication and a prescription bottle opener for those who have arthritis or hand weakness. Long-handled scrubbing brushes are useful, but make sure that they are compatible with all sizes of washrags and poufs.
A collapsible raised commode will provide part-time toilet accessibility for guests who have trouble standing or bending their knees. Look for travel models that fold up into a very compact space. You may choose to buy a raised commode with stability bars, or you may want to install permanent grab bars near the toilet space.
Your entire family will feel welcome at your home – and those who cannot often travel due to mobility restrictions or disability will be extra appreciative of your inclusive efforts. The holidays and vacations will be so much more trouble-free once you have the perfect guest bathroom to complement that perfect guest bedroom.
Natalie S. is an online freelance writer that contributes your work to countless health and medical related websites and blogs. She is a self-proclaimed health nut that loves sharing her knowledge to readers maintain a healthy lifestyle.