If you or a loved one are handicapped, you may be wondering what you can do to make your home more handicap accessible. Many homes, especially older structures, are not always built to be particularly handicap-friendly and can require some work to get up to par. The good news is, there are a few straightforward changes you can make to help improve your or your loved one’s quality of life in the comfort of your own home.
1. Update the Bathroom
In many cases, one of the biggest accessibility challenges in the home lies in the bathroom. Between the slippery tub and the potentially treacherous toilet, your bathroom may be the first place you look when upgrading to more handicap friendly installations. Thankfully, there are a few things you can change right away. For instance, you can get mobile showers or step-in tubs to prevent slipping. You can also quickly install a safety frame around the toilet to help users sit down and get up easier. These changes alone can make a big difference in terms of quality of life.
2. Add Strategically Placed Handrails
Since getting up can often be a problem for handicapped people, simply installing handrails throughout the house can make a big difference. You can strategically place these in often-frequented locations, such as bedrooms, bathrooms and the living room. This is especially helpful if you or your loved one have mobility and balance issues or are susceptible to falls. By having handrails to grab on to all over the house, you can move around easier and increase your independence.
3. Install Ramps Instead of Stairs
Finally, since stairs can be a hazard and a challenge for many people with disabilities, you may want to consider adding ramps either alongside stairs or even in place of stairs. Even one-level homes often have at least some steps, so just about every house could benefit from the addition of some ramps. If your home has several floors, installing ramps means you can enjoy more of your house or provide access to new areas for your loved one. Additionally, you can find outdoor ramps to install around the house, so you can enjoy the yard as well.
When you or a family member are handicapped, it might seem challenging to make your home as handicap friendly as possible. Thankfully, creating a more accessible environment doesn’t have to be as difficult as it might seem. With these three simple changes, you’ll be well on your way to having an easy-to-navigate, handicap-accessible home before you know it.