“Between 2006 and 2030, the number of people in the U.S. age 65 and over will nearly double from 37 million to 71.5 million. Of that group, 87 percent want to remain in their homes as they age, according to a study conducted by the AARP. This underscores the importance of aging-in-place projects for remodelers and dovetails with an important statistic: Falls account for more accidental deaths among seniors than all other types of accidents combined.” – Professional Remodeler Magazine
It’s typical to think of those ugly, commercial grab bars when you think of aging-in-place design or disabled design for the bathroom. Here are 7 not-so-obvious design details that make functionality better for all ages creating a Universal design.
Nobody wants to be scalded with hot water. A thermostatic control valve can cap off how hot the water can get. It also can control water volume which can save water when you are doing things like shaving or shampooing.
Whether your eye sight starts to deteriorate or you can’t seem to find your glasses, contrasting colors in a design help you to see the start and stop of different objects such as a bathtub or shower curb against the floor.
Grip strength weakens as we age but what happens when someone breaks their arm? Levers make it easier to open doors and turn on faucets by simply pushing on them.
Handhelds are great for people who are seated while showering but also for kids beginning to shower and even pets. Add an extra hook by the bench to place the handheld while using it.
Gone are those commercial grab bars in your home. Grab bars are now disguised as towel bars, shampoo shelves, corner soap dishes and even tissue holders. Be sure to check out Invisia and Delta for some favorites!
Benches serve many purposes in a shower including a seat, but also a foot rest while shaving legs or a place for toiletries. Types of shower benches include the built-in bench, fold down bench or even a portable bench.
Eliminating the threshold of a shower allows for wheelchair accessibility but they also tend to look better. Trench drains allow for a curb-less shower, but beware as some existing bathrooms do not allow for it. With a big enough shower, you can also eliminate the door, making it so much easier to get in and out.
Finding an NKBA professional gives you confidence knowing they have the knowledge and understanding for accessible and universal bathroom design.
“Good design is obvious. Great design is transparent.”
— Joe Soprano
Chelsey Home has a wealth of experience when it comes to creating a universal bathroom design and can help you design a more accessible bathroom for your home. Get in touch to inquire about my services and see how I can help you create a home you love and feel safe in.
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