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Understanding the Benefits of Grab Bars for Senior Home Safety

Family Caregiver Tips in Indianapolis, IN

Family Caregiver TipsThere are so many things that can impact safety for a senior at home that it can feel a bit overwhelming just trying to evaluate them all. It can also be difficult to fully understand certain benefits of some safety features. One of those safety features that can provide numerous benefits are grab bars.

What are grab bars?

These are bars that are generally installed in and around the shower or tub surround that provide support for senior, or anyone else, who may have a tendency to lose their balance or have difficulty getting around on their own. These are not the same as towel bars, though.

That is a common misconception that far too many people have. It’s easy to see a towel bar that is installed in a shower and think it’s going to support a full grown adult’s weight. In truth, if somebody slips and tries to grab onto one of these towel bars, it will likely rip free from the wall, either from the ceramic tile or the wallboard underneath.

If it rips free, that can cause the individual to fall and sometimes the injuries that result can be even more severe than if the senior simply fell the first time. By grabbing onto a towel bar, it shifts the angle and direction a person is facing. That could cause them to fall square on their back onto the tub lip, into a shower door, or even out onto the hard ceramic tile floor where they can sustain serious head trauma.

Grab bars are much more secure, quite a bit larger, and are anchored into the wall studs behind the ceramic tile and wallboard.

When a person is getting into the tub or shower and is not completely steady on their feet, they can use these grab bars to help them gain balance. That can provide comfort and security for the senior so they know they will be safe getting into and out of the shower.

Grab bars can also be installed around toilets to provide the ability for a senior to ease down onto it without the risk of losing strength in their legs, especially for a low seated toilet.

When you understand the benefits of grab bars, it becomes much easier to convince an elderly individual in your own family to consider having them professionally installed. Grab bars should be installed by a home improvement contractor who has experience with this rather than a family member who considers himself or herself a ‘do-it-yourselfer.’

The professionals at Great Care are available to talk with you and your family about all of your home care needs. Great Care is a non medical in-home care agency providing quality and affordable home care in Indianapolis, IN and the surrounding areas. Call (888) 240-9101 for more information.

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Valerie VanBooven RN BSN

Editor in Chief at Approved Senior Network
Valerie is a Registered Nurse and long-term care expert. She has published 4 books on caring for aging adults and is the Editor in Chief of and