Having a physical disability or illness can have a significant impact on a person’s daily life. It might cause them to stop working permanently and prevent them from leaving their homes without assistance. That’s why it’s imperative to make their lives at home easier.
The difficulty arises because they will have mobility issues, which will prevent them from doing tasks they used to do with ease. In cases like this, making the house more accessible can be of great help to them. The great news is that you only need make a few adjustments to your home.
Creating An Accessible Home
The following tips will help you create a more accessible home to let people with physical disabilities live without barriers.
Disabled people with wheelchairs often need bigger doorways. Often, wheelchairs don’t fit through ordinary doors; it will give the person a hard time moving from one room to another. And, of course, you wouldn’t want your loved ones to have difficulty every time they want to pass through a doorway.
To avoid this, widen the doorways in your house, especially the doors to their room and shared spaces. In general, standard door frames are 91.44 cm wide, but it will be ideal to widen the door for up to 106.68 cm.
A home with more than one floor might need to construct a ramp for easy access. Stairways are often the reason why disabled people get into accidents. If the patient is dependable on a wheelchair, then you should think of creating a ramp.
But even though the person isn’t using a wheelchair, having a ramp at home is still ideal to exit and enter the home. The elderly and disabled people will benefit more from a ramp because it will make walking easier.
Friendly tip: Make sure to put non-slippery doormats on each end of the ramps. Doing so will prevent accidents mainly caused by slipping.
Remove Shower Curbs
Most shower rooms are made with shower curbs, but you can survive without one. Make your loved ones’ life easier by removing shower curbs. You don’t necessarily have to remove your bathtub. However, it would be better to provide a space for the disabled person to shower in.
Do not force them to use the bathtub if it’s beyond their capabilities. Even people without physical disabilities are at risk of tripping over the curb, resulting in falling. Build a shower that’s easy to access- with no barriers, curbs, or borders on the floor. In addition, it would also be wiser to have grab bars installed for extra support.
Another dilemma for people with disabilities is reaching high-level cabinets. To help them:
- Build lower-level cabinets that they can easily access.
- Add stuff such as pull-out racks to make the cabinets more accessible.
- Make sure that their possessions like clothes and other items are placed somewhere they can easily reach.
Have Toilet Risers
Toilet risers are very useful for disabled people. It adds height to the toilet, making it trouble-free for people with bending or back issues to use it. You don’t have to worry about the cost as well. Toilet risers cost no more than $50 and are obtainable in local shops and drugstores.
Carpets often make it hard to control a wheelchair. The thicker the carpet is, the harder it will be to move the chair and do it independently. If possible, remove the carpets in your common spaces like the kitchen and the living room. Remember that wheelchairs work better on smooth surfaces like tile, linoleum, and wood.
Accessible Light Switches
Despite the circumstances, people with disabilities still prefer to be independent, especially with minor tasks like turning lights on and off. Make sure that light switches are accessible to them even though they are sitting in a wheelchair.
In most cases, moving the light switches to a lower level might be too pricey. But there is an affordable option. Try to install smart home technology so they can control the lights, music, and everything at home with the help of their smartphones.
Providing Knee Spaces for Countertops and Under Sinks
Allow your loved one to be more independent by providing space for their knee and wheelchair under sinks and countertops. They should be able to move comfortably despite sitting down, which will allow them to do things without assistance.
Renovating your home to make it more accessible for people with disabilities might cost you money. But you don’t have to do all things at once. Try to provide what they need the most so they can live comfortably. By giving them the chance to move freely and safely, you are helping them become more self-sufficient, no matter what condition they have.