One frustrating aspect of limited mobility is how it affects your ability to bathe and shower. If you can't stand or walk very well, then getting in and out of a bathtub is impossible. Most showers are off-limits too since they usually have small doors, rims around the bottom to hold water, and a lack of space. Using a traditional shower can be unsafe even if you can manage to get inside it. The solution could be to have a barrier-free shower installed. Here's some information about their features.
The Entry Area Is Level With The Floor
A barrier-free shower is completely level with the floor. There is no need for a basin and rim to contain the water. Instead, the floor slants slightly toward the floor drain, so water drains out quickly rather than run all over the bathroom floor. This makes it possible to roll a wheelchair in and out of the shower where you can transfer to a seat for a relaxing shower that helps maintain good hygiene.
No Shower Door Is Needed
Due to the way the floor is slanted and water drains away from the entrance to the shower, there is no need for a shower door. However, a wider than usual shower door can be installed that allows wheelchair access, or a partial glass wall can be installed if desired to help with comfort and temperature control.
Extra Room Is Allowed For Maneuvering
Barrier-free showers are often larger than traditional showers, so there is room for two people to move around safely. If you need help with showering or transferring from a wheelchair to a shower chair, then you'll need the extra space a roomy barrier-free shower allows. You'll be able to turn around in a wheelchair with ease to position yourself in the shower and have room to push the wheelchair out of the way, but stay handy for when you're finished.
Barrier-Free Showers Have Accessibility Features
If you need to shower sitting down, then you'll want controls that can be reached in a sitting position. Faucet handles are lower in these showers, and they often have a detachable shower head so you can move the shower around your body while you're seated. Built-in seating is another feature that's common. If you don't use a shower chair, but just need a place to sit down if you get weak or tired, then you'll appreciate having a seating nook near the shower so you can finish washing while seated.
Kits Are Available, Or They Can Be Custom-Made
While you can remodel your current bathroom or add a new bathroom with a barrier-free shower that looks every bit as luxurious as any other shower, that isn't always possible. The alternative is to buy a barrier-free shower kit and have that installed. These are often made of fiberglass, and they have three walls that compose the shower stall. They come with a zero-entry shower pan that slopes toward the drain as well as other features like grab bars, seats, and accessible controls. The kits are a more affordable option and allow you to install a barrier-free shower quicker.
Barrier-free showers are necessary when you have limited mobility, and you want to continue taking showers. However, they are also suitable for family use. This makes the shower a good investment if you're looking ahead to your retirement years or considering having your elderly parents move in with you.