I was recently commissioned by Premier Care to give my thoughts on the following topic…
It is very easy to take for granted simple acts that we do everyday such as getting in and out of the bath tub. For those of us who are young, this is a task that we accomplish with relative ease without even worrying about it. But there is a wide section of the population that does not enjoy this simple luxury mostly because they are physical limited in one way or another. Take for instance senior citizens.
Contrary to popular belief that they could be suffering from some form or another of rheumatoid arthritis, there are those who are unable to get into the bath tub without special assistance simply because they are too old. With old age, the joints become stiff in some cases. Then there are those who suffer from arthritis of one format or another. Arthritis is a painful inflammation of the joints that makes movement an excruciatingly painful experience. Walk in tubs and baths are an answer to this.
Then there are those who are not old but are also physically limited in one way or another. They could have been born with a crippling birth defect that stops them from being able to make normal movements. There are also those who have become paralyzed due to one reason or another and are now bound to wheelchairs. All these people need special assistance to get in and out of the shower or bathtub. Before the advent of walk in baths, people with these kinds of mobility issues had to be physically carried in and out of the tab.
Walk-In Bath Design as an Accessible
Walk in baths are specially designs tubs that have a door on the site which resembles the concept of a motor vehicle. The people using the tub opens the door gets inside and closes the door. Some newer tubs have a seat as well. Once inside the person can close the door and proceed to turn on the water. The curious thing about walk-in tubs and baths is that they are so airtight that they do not leak even at the hinges of the door. The walk in tubs also have strategically placed handles where the person using the tub can easily lift themselves out of the tub before stepping out. This is a wonderful convenience for people with disabilities or motion-limiting sicknesses.
Why Walk In Tubs and Baths
For many years, ever since bath tubs debuted, there was an assumption that they were convenient for everyone. After all, relaxation experts introduced us to the concept of aroma therapy. Where the whole body could relax in a scented bath tub and one could simply enter into a state of total bliss. This was true and there were also many companies which sprung up to cater for the “spa” culture with soaps, fragrances and bubble bath liquid soaps.
Many people also spend hundreds of millions every year in spa visits. And, their time there includes time spent in an aroma therapy bath tub. One of the greatest advantages of having a bath tub in the house is the fact that instead of spending hundreds of dollars in spa visits. One can simply enjoy the spa experience right at home by simply getting the tub ready and stepping right in. But not everyone in the local population enjoys these bubble baths quite in the same way as we think.
Many senior citizens are too old and have bone and joint complications. Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammation of the joints that attacks mostly women from the ages of 35 onwards. This condition is very painful and can cause a loss of quality of life. In extreme cases, arthritics can cause one to be unable to use certain parts of their limbs. Because many senior suffer from this disease, it means they are unable to get into the bath tub without assistance and once inside, are often “trapped” and cannot get out without great effort. It can also be dangerous for seniors with this condition enter in and out of a bath tub by themselves because of risks of slipping and falling. There are many cases where seniors have fallen in the tub due to difficulty either getting in or out or simply slipping because of inability to bend them.
The answer to these bath tubs issues is walk in baths. These are bath tubs which have specially-fitted side doors resembling a motor vehicle. Where one can simply open the door and step in. Once inside they can sit and close the door and it shuts in an air-tight and water-tight manner meaning once the water fills the tub. There will be leakage where the door hinges are. This is a technological marvel of convenience for seniors especially those that suffer from rheumatoid arthritis.
There is also another group of the population that does not enjoy regular bath tub experiences the way we do. These are the disabled; those that are permanently bedridden and those that are assigned to wheelchairs and walking aids. Some of these people are also those who are partially paralyzed especially from the waist downwards. Walk in bathtubs are the answer to these group’s bath tub needs. Because, they are unable to step into a regular tub in much the same way as the rest of the people. A walk tub is also ideal in minimizing accidents especially if they are to bathe themselves.
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In the past, it used to be that the caretaker had to lift the invalid into the tub. And, this could be strenuous especially where the person being carried is bigger than the one carrying them.
There are many types of walk in baths and showers. This is because there are many ailments and types of physical limitations. The walk in shower is the most basic and standard and simple to operate. The shower or bath is take in an upright position and there is no need to sit. These are already in-built in many homes. Then there are the walk-in bathtubs. At first glance, this looks like a regular bathtub but on closer examination one realizes that there is a door cut on the side. That means there is no lifting of oneself, which was difficult for people with physical impairments.