We use the bathroom several times a day. The activities are so routine that we often do them without thinking.
Yet the bathroom is one of the primary places accidents in the home occur. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 235,000 people aged 15 and over visit emergency rooms every year due to accidents that occur in the bathroom. Almost 14% are hospitalized. The injury rate is significantly higher for women.
More than one-third of all injuries happen while bathing or showering, and these injuries account for the majority of emergency room visits. So here are some tips to avoid slipping and sliding, both in and out of the tub/shower.
- Make sure your tub or shower has a slip-resistant bottom. Most new tubs have a textured slip resistant bottom.
- Keep the tub and shower clean; soap scum and mold can cause you to slip.
- Install grab bars in the tub or shower.
- Install a seat in the shower.
- To avoid injuries getting in or out of the tub, consider just installing a shower.
- If you are installing a bathtub or whirlpool, keep it to one step up or, better yet, no steps.
- For bathroom flooring, use small ceramic tiles or a less slippery floor material.
- Absolutely avoid scatter rugs that can slide around.
Of course, even with all these preventative measures, some slips may occur. So keep in mind the following to minimize any harm.
- Put cushioned covers over faucets and handles in case somebody does fall and hit their head or other body part against them.
- Install clothes hooks above eve level so that if you slip and fall, nothing can poke you in the eye.
- Choose a vanity and vanity top with round, not sharp, corners.
Next month we will have more bathroom safety tips.