Designing an Accessible Bathroom
Whether you need a little help getting in and out of the shower or you’re a wheelchair user who needs a fully accessible shower you might be wondering where do I start? How do I know which accessible products are best for me? Well, that’s why we have created an in-depth guide about the things to consider when designing an accessible bathroom.
Click here to see our full range of Assisted Living products.
One of the most important things to consider when designing an accessible bathroom is space. You need to think about the amount of maneuverable space in your bathroom and where best to position items from your bath or shower to a grab rail.
What is a Grab Rail?
One of the most common accessible products installed in a bathroom is a grabrail. Bathrooms can be dangerous at the best of times and when you feel slightly unsteady on your feet moving around can be quite scary. One of the simplest and most effective ways to provide that little bit of support is to fit a grab rail. Grab rails come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colours, allowing you to find the perfect one for your needs and bathroom design.
Straight Grab Rails
A straight grab rail might be the most popular choice due to its ability to be fitted anywhere, even in small spaces. A straight grab rail is a good choice for people needing a bit of extra support when using the shower or assistance getting in and out of the bath.
Curved Grab Rails
Curved grab rails are not only practical but can also add some style to your bathroom. The curved design can help when gripping the grab rail at certain angles as it can help to prevent your hand from slipping down the grab rail.
Angled Grab Rails
An angled grab rail can provide extra support to a straight grab rail for some people, as they can help when you need a continual gradient increase for example when gradually raising yourself off the toilet or a shower seat.
Hinged Support Rails
Hinged support rails are ideal for installation by the toilet, helping the user to get on and off more easily. A hinged support rail is perfect for a bathroom used by multiple people as you are able to fold it out of the way when it’s not in use.
What is a Back Rest Rail?
A backrest rail is ideal for use with a shower seat or back-to-wall toilet, providing that extra bit of comfort and support to the user.
If you find it hard to use a standard toilet, no matter the issue then you might consider a disabled toilet. Disabled toilets come in a range of styles and heights allowing you to choose the one that best suits your needs.
What is a Comfort Height Toilet?
Comfort height toilets are the perfect choice if you find it difficult to lower yourself onto the toilet. With a raised height it means you don’t have to lower yourself as far down as with a standard toilet, potentially reducing pressure on your joints.
What is a Shower Toilet?
A shower toilet has a variety of benefits for those who are less able. With an adjustable frame, you can alter the height of the toilet depending on the user. It also incorporates pure water, making it ideal for gently cleaning your more sensitive and intimate areas.
What is a Disabled Basin?
If you struggle to reach a standard pedestal basin then it might be worth looking at our range of disabled basins. If you use a wheelchair then a basin with a concaved front might suit you as it allows you to get closer to the taps, therefore making it easier to reach the handle and wash your hands.
A tap for the less able doesn’t have to be unattractive. Disabled taps come in a range of designs with a variety of features suitable for the less able, including automatic infrared taps, thermostatic taps, and those with longer levers for easy access and use. If you find it difficult to use a lever on a standard tap, then a tap with longer levers or an automatic sensor tap may suit your needs.
Bath or Shower?
Another main issue to consider is whether you need a bath or a shower. When deciding whether a bath or shower would suit you best then you need to consider whether you can get in and out of the bath without support. If you find it difficult to get in and out of the bath but have your heart set on one then there are items such as bath steps that could help you. However, if you feel a bath isn’t an option then choosing the best accessible shower is an important decision. With so many options available you need to consider whether a shower enclosure, a walk-in shower, or even a wet room would best suit your needs.
With a wide range of shower enclosures on the market, it’s difficult to know which type will best suit your needs, especially for those who are less able. Quadrant, square, rectangular, walk-in, the choice is endless. For those who struggle with mobility, a walk-in enclosure is probably the go-to choice, due to their easy access and the ability to fit a shower tray flush to the floor, avoiding the chance of tripping when getting in and out.
Anti-slip Shower Trays
When installing a shower enclosure for someone vulnerable or uneasy on their feet it’s essential to fit an anti-slip shower tray in order to prevent any slips. Anti-slip shower trays come in a variety of shapes and sizes allowing you to choose the perfect fit for your shower enclosure.
What is a Wet Room?
A wet room is probably the easiest choice for all-around safety and accessibility due to the lack of slip and trip hazards. It is also easy to install things like grab rails and shower seats in, allowing you to feel truly safe when showering.
When creating a wet room it's essential to consider wet room formers. A wet room former simply sits underneath your flooring as a replacement for a standard shower tray. To see our range of wet room formers designed with extra strength to support the weight of a wheelchair, click here.
If you find yourself struggling to shower whilst standing then, a shower seat might be the perfect solution. Our range of shower seats come in all shapes, designs, and sizes, allowing you to find the one that best suits your needs. If you’re looking to take the weight off your feet whilst showering, then a simple folding shower seat might do the job. However, if you’re looking for more support and stability then a padded shower seat complete with arms and backrest might be more suitable.
When choosing a shower for an accessible bathroom you need to consider the needs of the person using it. If you will be using a shower seat or wheelchair whilst showering then you will need a shower with an extended riser rail and or an extended shower hose, to allow you to position the showerhead in the correct position for your needs.
For the less able it might be difficult to quickly get out the way if the shower has a sudden temperature increase or decrease and that’s why one of the main features of a disabled shower is its thermostatic temperature controls, which ensure the shower's temperature holds steady, therefore reducing the chance of burns.
Assisted Living Cloakroom Suites
An Assisted Living cloakroom suite is the perfect choice if you want to buy in bulk. Coming complete with a comfort height toilet, multiple grab rails, wall hung basin, and a tap with easy-to-use levers it is suitable for the needs of most accessible bathrooms.
If you feel your whole shower area needs to be more accessible, then why not consider a shower pack as they include all the things you may need in one bundle. You will also have peace of mind knowing the products have been designed as an aid specifically for those who are less able. Our range of shower packs includes shower seats, grab rails, and thermostatic showers.
More than 10 million people in the UK live with arthritis, and we know that arthritis is painful and can make simple tasks such as using the toilet challenging. That’s why Arthr has designed a range of products specifically for those with arthritis. Their products are designed and manufactured in the UK, in collaboration with healthcare professionals and people with arthritis to ensure that they can be used with confidence.
If you feel you need some extra support to get on and off the toilet or find it difficult getting in and out of the bath, then the wonderful range of Arthr might be the perfect solution.
Why Choose a Toilet Riser?
A toilet riser is a simple and easy way to help those with arthritis to use the toilet more easily. Lowering yourself onto the toilet can be difficult for those with arthritis and is likely to cause them pain. The toilet riser simply fits over the top of an existing toilet and is designed to fit in with any bathroom design and style and most importantly looks like a standard toilet.
Why Choose a Bath Step?
A bath step is the perfect way to help those with arthritis to get in the bath more easily, creating an equal height to the inside of the bath. You can use the bath step with its’ clever handle to raise your legs one at a time over the side of the bath.
Why choose a toilet assist?
If you find it difficult to raise and lower yourself on and off the toilet and find yourself grabbing onto the wall or maybe your toilet roll holder to help, then a toilet assist might be the perfect solution.
Even though this range of Arthr products is designed for those with arthritis it doesn’t mean they can’t be used by people without arthritis. They may also suit the elderly or less able, helping you to carry out day to day tasks safely and comfortably.
Claire has a Journalism degree and loves writing about all things relating to bathroom and kitchen design. In her spare time, she enjoys photography and following the latest home styling trends on social media.
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