Outside your house, the world poses unique obstacles when living with limited mobility. However, without proper adjustments, danger could be lurking in your own home, too. In honor of National Kitchen and Bath Month, EZ-ACCESS has identified red-alert areas and modifications to make your home a safe haven.
- Stovetops: Knobs stationed at the back of stovetops force wheelchair-bound chefs to reach across hot burners to operate. Reduce the risk by choosing stovetops with knobs and push-buttons on the front panel. Additionally, consider installing a mirror above the stove to check on food as it cooks rather than removing pans and risking hot spills.
- Counters: Ceramic or marble countertops become slick with juice when chopping fruits and veggies, making an accidental slip of a knife likely. Gain stability with nonslip or rubberized cutting mats or boards for an added grip while you prep.
- Shelving: A container stashed too high on the shelf or too far back in the cupboard requires a reach, which can upset your balance and send you tumbling. Shelves that slide out or revolving Lazy Susan cupboards bring the item right to you, no awkward stretching required.
- Sinks: To accommodate wheelchairs, some sinks expose plumbing pipes. Hot water flowing through the system can heat pipes to a point that causes serious burns. Cover with insulation or box them in to prevent a surprise scalding.
- Tubs: Transferring from chair to tub requires coordination, putting your limited balance to the test. The possibility of slips, bumps, and missteps are endless without the proper assistance gear. A simple grab bar installed to a wall or the interior of a shower can make all the difference, as can swivel-style shower seats, roll-in showers, and benches that extend past the bathtub.
- Toilets: Much like chair-to-tub action, maneuvering from one seat to another poses risk when accessing the toilet. A seat riser for your toilet evens the playing field and makes the move easier, and safety rails provide a sturdy place for leaning and regaining balance.
- Flooring: Ceramic and tile floors paired with splashing water from sinks and tubs create the perfect storm for an impending slip. Placing non-slip bath matts in front of the sink, tub, and bathroom door still provide easy access for walkers and wheelchairs while reducing the risk of taking a tumble.
Your home should be a place of rest, not risk. EZ-ACCESS encourages you to maintain your independence with smart solutions to daily challenges. Give us a call at 800-451-1903 to find out more solutions for accessibility in your home such as ramps, power chair lifts, platform lifts and accessible bathing products!