The Importance of Bath Accessibility

2020 has been an eventful year to say the least, but in the bath remodeling world one of the most exciting trends we’ve seen is the rise of what we like to call “bathing independence.” Bathing independence is the concept of anyone being able to safely and effectively take a bath or shower on their own. Here at West Shore Home®, we’ve seen recent growth in popularity of our bath and shower accessibility features, which are key to this concept. In this post, we’ll break down what bath and shower accessibility feature are, how they contribute to safe and accessible bathing, and how this is increasingly important in 2020.

What are Bath Accessibility Features?

Bath accessibility features are any add-ons to a bath or shower that assist with safe and effective bathing. Some of the most popular accessibility features include:

  • Grab Bars – Bars attached to the wall inside or outside a shower or bath to assist with safely getting in or out.
  • Seats – Waterproof seats designed to help those who cannot stand for extended periods of time or with disabilities/handicaps.
  • Doors – Doors built into the bath enclosure to bypass stepping over the bath’s edge.
  • Low or “Easy” Steps – Steps built into the side of a bath to assist with getting in or out.

At West Shore Home, our bath professionals can install these features in a variety of positions and angles to best benefit our customers.

A West Shore Home bath remodel with accessibility features.

Who are Bath Accessibility Features For?

For many of us, taking a bath or shower is a relatively seamless experience, minus a stubbed toe or a bit of scalding water here or there. Chances are that’s because we’re young, healthy, or simply haven’t tripped over the side of our bathtub yet.

Unfortunately, for many, bathing can be a frustrating experience. Some groups having to deal with this may include:

  • The Elderly – As we age, our sense of balance and comfort with movement naturally declines. This can make bathing accidents more prevalent.
  • Those with Movement-Related Disabilities or Conditions – Many people across the U.S. and the world struggle with coordination or strength-related conditions such as arthritis, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and more.
  • People with Poor Eyesight – Poor vision can make it harder to feel secure when entering a bath or shower, which tend to be wet surfaces.

Bath accessibility features such as grab bars, seats, and steps can be a game-changer for folks in these groups. With an added sense of safety and security, these features help people build confidence in their bathing independence.

Bathing Independence in 2020

2020 has been a challenging year with the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing guidelines, and uncertainty surrounding the safety of nursing homes and assisted living situations.

The popularity of bath accessibility features, such as grab bars, seats, steps, and more has grown exponentially this year, with about 16% of our bath and shower sales including these features. Many of our customers, citing the concerns mentioned above, have expressed great interest in helping loved ones gain the ability to easily take a bath or a shower on their own. Our design consultants and installation experts have assisted in installing accessibility features custom to each bathroom they work in.

At West Shore Home, our goal is to provide a safe and comfortable bathroom experience for all the families we work with. Our customers have expressed gratitude and relief that accessibility features will enable their loved ones to achieve bathing independence.

A West Shore Home bath remodel with accessibility features.

Safe & Secure Baths and Showers are Here to Stay

While many of the challenging situations and sentiments of 2020 will fade with time, the idea of bathing independence, safety, and security is likely here to stay. Our customers and the general public have expressed greater care and awareness for safety in all aspects of their lives, including their bathrooms. West Shore Home is continually innovating with new accessibility features for baths and showers. We look forward to helping more and more customers achieve bathing independence moving forward.