Bathroom falls are very common for the elderly with balance problems. Bathrooms can be hazardous for the elderly. The floors are slick, the surfaces wet, the space small and all hard. If you fall into a bathroom, you may well hit a section of your body – head, knee, shoulder – on a wardrobe or fitting, as well as the impact of hitting the floor.
From research, it is known that 80 per cent of bathroom falls occur in the home by elderly with balance problems. These falls cause minor scrapes and contusions, broken bones, head injuries, and injuries to the spinal cord.
The Scenario of Bathroom Injuries for Elderly
Seniors usually have more mobility, eyesight, and balance issues what leads them more prone to fall or slip. The bathroom is particularly dangerous in this sense, since it is sometimes a tiny area with slick surfaces that are worsened by the presence of water, and is frequently used at night.
Females make up a higher share of the older population, and the increased number of female older people wounded most likely reflects this.
At 64 years of age, more women (68%) than males were hurt in this age group.
This age group’s bathroom injuries happened most frequently between 8 and 9 am and 5 to 8 pm. 79 % of these injuries were caused by falling. The majority of injuries happened while doing ‘personal activities such as showering or changing from a bath or toilet to a walker (96 per cent). 40% of injuries occur while doing chores.
Injuries to the head and face were 23%, upper limbs 20%, pelvis, hips, and thighs 17%, and other lower limbs 14%.
39 percent of these injuries were urgent. Overall, 37% of these individuals required hospitalization. Admission was needed for 74% of hip injuries and 21% of head injuries.
58 (11%) older persons were wounded at residential institutions. 73% of patients were female. All the injuries were mostly caused by falls in the bathroom.
Major Reasons for Bathroom Injuries for elderly
In a bathroom, numerous pipes and faucets might be broken. Damaged pipes or ropes might leak, wetting the bathroom floor. Because the vast majority of the bathroom flooring is slippery when wet. A sufferer may slide on the moist surface of the leak.
A bathroom toilet or sink may get obstructed. As the water is flowing or the toilet is flushing, the water level might get overflowing and slippery onto the floor.
Wear and strain on the tile floor, induced by heavy usage, can raise or shatter tiles on the floor. Broken or broken tiles on the floor pose a risk to people who use the restroom.
Baths and showers may be very quiet but can also be very dangerous. Accidents in the bathroom are a significant source of slips and falls. If you have the chance to shower or bathe, wear slip-proof shower and bath mats, safety rails, and extreme caution.
Low and low illumination:
This may be highly dangerous if you cannot see where you are going or if anything is not spotted in your trail. Try to avoid poorly lit places or provide more light. In these instances, Flashlight applications are also a valuable utility.
10 Ways to Reduce Fatal Bathroom Injuries for Elderly
- Bathroom design: Non-slip applications for baths and showers should be applied. Slip-resistant materials in damp places should be applied. Assemble hobless showers to avoid travel. The temperature of the hot tap water should not exceed 50°C. This is currently legally required in new or refurbished bathrooms. Ideally, all outlets in the house with a tempering valve must use this temperature. Individual tap control bodies can also be bought for about $30. They can be installed easily by parents from hardware stores or online vendors. Locking cupboards for secure storage of medicine and chemicals should be placed in the bathrooms
- Older people: Numerous specialized strategies exist for avoiding falls in older adults and minimizing damage from these falls. Exercise training, balance training, osteoporosis prevention and treatment, medication knowledge, footwear, mobility aids, protective devices, professional home hazard assessment, and home hazard reduction are all included in these programs.
- Falls On the bottom of the bath and shower, a suction mat or non-slip stickers should be utilized. While bath time should be enjoyable, children should be taught to sit in the tub. A bath mat should be used to absorb any unavoidable sprays of water, therefore preventing slips and falls. Nappy changing tables provide a risk of falling. Consider if one is essential; there are safer options, such as the floor or the centre of a bed. If one is to be utilized, it should be sturdy, have obstacles, and a waist belt. Every time, the waist belt should be worn.
Prepare by gathering all necessary items before beginning to change the infant. Never leave a baby alone on a changing table; maintain one hand on your infant at all times.
- Water Safety: In and around the Bath. Bath monitoring is important. To guarantee this occurs, try to schedule your bath time around a time when there are less possible distractions and remove your phone from the hook or take it to the bathroom if required. If supervision is stopped, the kid should be withdrawn from the bath and placed in the care of the caregiver. Children under the age of five years should be supervised directly by an adult while bathing. Older children are incapable of supervising smaller children in the bath since they will never understand the actual danger and cannot be depended upon to act in the adult’s absence. Bath seats for infants have been linked to bathtub drowning. They can instill a false sense of security in adults, as they are not a safety device. When a bath seat is required, adult contact should be maintained at all times.
- Other Water Risks: In the laundry tub, keep buckets of water (for soaking clothes) high, with a lid, and out of sight. Close the door and keep the toilet cover down. Consider a toilet latch.
- Door-jam injuries Door hinges can be protected with special strips. Doors in the bathroom and bedroom need to be closed. Internal doors can also be kept from crashing shut by latches, wedges, or slow-closing springs. Preventing these injuries begins with educating older children and adults. Heat tap water to 50°C (see ‘Bathroom Design’) to prevent burns. Never add hot water to a bath without running the cold tap first. Avoid hot drips and a hot faucet by turning off the hot tap first. Before placing kids in the bath, test the water temperature with your wrist or elbow.
- Burns Ensure that the maximum temperature of the hot tap water is 50°C (see ‘Design of Bathroom’). Always run the cold tap in the bathroom and add hot water during the temperature test. Turn off the hot tap first and finish with cold water in order to avoid hot drops and warm rolls. Check the water temperature (with wrist or elbow) before bathing.
- Supporting items to be installed Important features of house changes include properly positioned grabbing tracks and bars, bright lights (including night illumination) slip-on surfaces, and suitable walking places without risks. These changes should be done early — before a fall. Fear of falling is a risk factor for the fall of older persons.
- Slippers Get non-slip bathroom slippers for the elderly and for it you have to your slipper is slippery or not. The slippers with non-slip outsole and grip resistance will prevent fall and will maintain balance on the water surface.
- Bathroom chemicals Keep in a secure location all the bathroom chemicals such as cleansers, detergents and bleaches. They should be in a locked closet out of reach. You need to be careful about falling detergents on the floor.
How Using Bathroom Slipper Significantly Reduce Fatal Bathroom Injuries for Elderly
- Slip resistance:
Bathroom slippers come with a slip resistance that helps prevent slip and falls. Everyone has slipped in the shower once or twice. Barefoot or low-traction footwear, such as flip-flops, might cause this.Falling in the shower is risky and might result in a severe bruise. To avoid such hazards, use bathroom slippers.
Bathroom slippers were made waterproof. These slippers dry quickly after usage in the shower, preventing them from becoming bacteria breeding grounds and from slipping.
- Durability: Poor-quality sandals can be problematic, especially if they break mid-shower. The greatest bathroom slippers are long-lasting, so invest in a pair of high-quality slippers that will last long and will maintain balance while showering.
Recommendations for elderly to stay safe from Bathroom injuries
- Safety should be a significant feature in the design of the bathroom, including reduction of slip/trip size, lockables and decreased wa-ter temperature.
- Non-slip items in bath and shower should be used to avoid falling
- The temperature of the bath tap water must be lowered to less than 50°. A tap regulator should be used on the bath tap if a tempering valve is not fitted.
- The safe storage of medication (including herbal goods and vitamins), cleaning products and hygiene products is preferable.
- Door strips, shocks, or wedges can avoid finger jam injuries
- Kids under 5 years need to be supervised by adults when in the restroom.
- Cases in elderly individuals must be prevented before a fall; expert aid is easily available from organizations such as Queensland Health.
So, the impact of non-slip bathroom slippers for the elderly in reducing fatal bathroom injuries helps prevent slips, trips, and falls. The slip-resistant grip on the slipper helps the wearer stay on his feet when wet greasy surfaces are used.