There is a growing interest and need for people to be able to age-in-place. Baby boomers and their aging parents overwhelmingly want their homes to meet accessibility needs no matter their age or stage in life. The trend to meet this growing demand is in its infancy.
Many people consider it “senior needs”, but the reality of safe bathing is considered a universal design. Everyone, whether young or old, will need some form of easy bathing at one point or another in their lifetime. A high school football player could injure himself in a game and be on crutches temporarily. Having a barrier-free shower, meaning without any step up or curb into the shower, would make his capability to get in and out of the shower much easier and safer.
Also, any-age person living in a wheelchair or temporarily in one could appreciate the easy entry into the shower. But barrier-free showers aren’t the only solutions that have made bathing safe and comfortable. Simple accessories, like grab bars and seats, are becoming popular in almost every residential shower. Whether there is one grab bar or four, it is again helpful for all ages and needs as a simple assistant for getting in and out of a shower or bathtub. Seats can be portable, built-in or attached to the wall of a shower as a fold-down. This creates a comfortable place for anyone and makes all abilities capable of taking showers.
Besides barrier-free showers, walk-in bathtubs are also offered for those who enjoy bathing in bathtubs but do not have the physical ability to get in and out of one. Although they seem costly, walk-in bathtubs offer great luxuries for the user. Most have full water and air jets used to relieve stress on the joints and acupressure. All fixtures and components are inclusive making the experience quite enjoyable.
Although it may be difficult for many people to find the need to purchase these aging-in-place necessities, it is a growing interest that will hit all of us at one point or another. Whether it is for our children, our parents, friends or even ourselves, having ways to bath safely and comfortable in our own homes is one of the smartest choices we can make.