Andy Roberts
20th April 2020

Walk in Baths for the Elderly – All You Need to Know

As we grow older, it can get increasingly difficult to make use of amenities that we once used effortlessly and independently. Bathing can especially become problematic with advanced age, increasing the possibilities of accidents or falls.

Growing old should not pose so many difficulties and it is with this in mind that to reduce this, that walk in baths were created. Once you find the right bathing solution for your requirements you’ll have at least one less thing to worry about.

But you should know that there are many options and designs you can choose from. The aim of this article will explain what you should know about these baths, how they work and what options are available.

Easy Access Baths for the Elderly

Whether you call them walk in baths or easy access baths, they are pretty much the same thing and are quite easy to understand. They are bathtubs that can be walked into rather than climbed into, the main purpose of these walk-in baths is their easy access. Being disabled or elderly can take away your independence and autonomy, especially when it comes to bathing.

Having to depend on someone else to help you in and out of the bath can take out of the pleasurable experience of bathing. Easy Access Baths help regain that piece of mind and independence. They have self-sealing water-tight doors that you can open and close on your own.

How do Easy Access Baths work?

You’re probably wondering just how these baths work, it’s simple really. It works the same way a normal bathtub would work. Although it differs in how you get in and out, and how it fills up and drains.

  • How do you get in? You walk into the bath through the door which can be located at the side or front. Door heights are different, so you must make adequate enquiries about space before installation. We provide different height baths and also install them. The best types are low step entry doors for easy access into the bath. Take a seat on your bath hoist, depending on which walk in bath you opted for, and you’ll be slowly lowered down. If you’re using a walk-in bath with an inbuilt seat, all you need to do is take a seat and shut the door. Make sure the door is completely shut and fully sealed to prevent leaks.
  • How does it fill up? As you have been lowered down into the bath, wait patiently for it to fill up. Yes, it can feel a bit strange to wait for your bath to fill up rather than entering into an already filled tub. But it doesn’t take long at all and it serves to extend your bathing experience. Once you get used to it, you won’t remember that you used to first fill the tub up.
  • How does it drain? It drains normally, you pull the plug and the water drains out. It takes the same amount of time to drain as it takes to fill.
  • How do you get out? You have to wait for the tub to drain completely before you step out. It can feel strange but it’s easy to get used to. Waiting for the easy access baths to drain will take a few minutes, to make the wait pleasant, some walk in baths have heated seats to prevent any chills. You can also keep your towel nearby so you just get wrapped up.

That’s how a walk in bath works. It is advisable to undertake all the necessary research before purchasing an Easy Access Bath, including access measurements such as getting up a staircase or through doors, plus the layout of the bathroom potentially. 

How Much Space is Needed?

Walk in baths come in various sizes and designs to meet all your needs and peticuliar situations. Before proceeding here’s a selection of a few types of walk in baths.

  • Standard Walk-in Baths: A walk-in bath with 52-inch length and width of 30-32 inches seems to be the normal dimensions that most people go for and that has awarded it the title of standard walk-in bath. It’s about 38 inches in length which means that when you sit in the easy access bath, the water gets to your neck.
  • Bariatric walk-in baths: This bath is more suitable for people who weigh more than 300 pounds. The standard walk-in bath might not be the best option for people who fall into this category. Bariatric walk-in baths are considerably wider with wider in-built chairs and thus more comfortable than the former.
  • Deep Soaking Walk-in baths: For people over 6ft, other types of walk-in baths might not be deep enough. The width and length of this deep soaking walk-in bath is the same as a standard bath but the length is increased by 8 inches. 8 inches is a big difference in whether the water reaches up your neck or your shoulders.
  • Long Walk-in Baths: if you’d prefer a longer walk-in bath, you can get easy access baths that are up to 60 inches long. But these baths can only function properly in a large bathroom. If you don’t have enough space for it, it will be more of an inconvenience than an indulgence.
  • Rectangular Walk-in Baths: if you don’t have enough space in your bathroom, this is the perfect easy access bath for you. It can fit in comfortably in a corner without taking up a lot of bathroom space.

The size of any walk-in bath you would get is dependent on the amount of space you already have as it has been previously emphasised but you can take these few tips to free up space in your bathroom.

  • Consider a hanging shelf: If you currently store toiletries or other bathroom items on a ground shelf perhaps you should consider a hanging shelf to free up more space.
  • Hang a mirror: Apart from the fact that this creates an impression of a larger room, it enhances your home décor in a functional way.
  • Installing a Window: You can also think about installing a window, allowing natural light to come in will make your bathroom feel lighter and more spacious.
  • Declutter your Bathroom: Doing a sweep of your bathroom and throwing some things out would be great for your bathroom. By the time you’re done with repositioning and removing, you’d be shocked with how space you would be able to free up.

Conclusion

With this information, you can get started on selecting the perfect walk in bath for you. If you’d like some expert help, please contact us at Change Mobility.  Our team of certified servicing and installation professionals can conduct site visits to determine your requirements, then handle delivery and installations.

You can also visit our Harrogate mobility showroom to view our high-quality products and find suitable walk-in baths or easy access bath solutions that work for you. We are all about your independence and that of anyone in your care. Speak to one of our expert professionals, call us today on 01423 500666.

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