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Bathing Difficulties

If you are elderly or care for somebody that is, you will understand that manoeuvring in and out of a bath can be difficult, never mind bathing as well. As known to many, a bathroom is a slippery place. Whether you are trying to get into the bath or maybe reaching for the tap, there is constantly a health and safety hazard due the water and steam. There are plenty of accessories and bathing equipment options that can help you as a carer or a user have an easier life when it comes to doing a daily routine.

As many of us have a bath, we all know that getting in and out relies not only on balance but strength as well. To eliminate the need to use your upper or lower body strength, there are plenty of bathing products available.

If you have a bath only, and have good upper body strength and trunk control, smaller items such as bath seats, bath grab rails, and bath steps may be of use.

If these options are not possible, a bathlift is often used. There are a number of different kinds of bathlifts, but the principle is always the same: using the up and down hand control, raise the bathlift to the top of the bath. You can then slide onto it, swing your legs round, and lower it down into the bath. Once you’ve finished, you press the up button to raise it, swing your legs over the edge of the bath, and stand up again. The battery is completely safe in the water and is charged off the mains in another room with a charger that plugs into a normal wall socket.

In most circumstances, a bathlift is an ideal solution. However, if even more support is needed, the Mermaid bath hoist can be specified.  This is a permanent fixture in your bathroom, and is a fixed, bath-side hoist which allows a carer to safely transfer the patient in and out of the bath at their own speed. Both manual and electric versions are available.

The Topaz Bathing Hoist:

Focussing on practicality and comfort, the Topaz Bathing Hoist is a great option for high-end care environments, and incorporates a patient mattress platform for improved comfort and safety. As the 3 fully adjustable mattresses are easy to remove, they are also easy to clean. It’s available as a powered hoist or a manual one.

Whilst walk-in baths are often the first option people think about when someone is struggling to get in and out of the bath, from experience we don’t often recommend them. They are a permanent fixture, and you have to get in, shut the door behind you and wait for it to fill up, and then wait for the water to drain away once you’ve finished, before you can get out. By the end of bathing time, users are often cold and tired! They are never completely level access either – you still have to step over a ledge where the door is to gain access. We do still offer walk-in baths, and have our own plumber who installs them to a high standard. However, as we mentioned before, a bathlift is often the best solution.

Yorkshire Care Equipment also offer a complete design and installation service for level access showers, wetrooms, and bathroom adaptations.  Work is carried out to a high standard by our own plumber, with minimum disruption.  If this is felt to be an option, we’d usually recommend a no-obligation site survey by our bathroom specialist, who can talk through your needs and desires and come up with an option to suit.

If you struggle with support in the bath, there are plenty of ways to get around this. With the development of bath cushions and supports, there is no reason why yourself or the person you are caring for should be in discomfort.

Burnett Bathing Supports:

This bathing support has been developed to provide postural support in the bath. The supports are very simple to use and can be adapted for different users. By letting the air into the system with the foot pump, this allows the beads to flow to the contours of the client and enables small adjustments to be made. When complete, extracting the air will produce a supportive mould in seconds.

For more information about all of our bathing products, contact us online or call our team now on 01423 799960.

Date Published

20 October 2014

Reading Time

3 minutes

Author avatar


Graeme Wilson

Graeme has worked alongside the public sector for much of his working life, helping departments improve efficiencies and deliver on projects. In his role at Vivid.Care, Graeme used his experience to tackle some of the most challenging issues in the healthcare sector, from falls through to winter pressures. He was also a guest speaker and a number of different conferences, including at the Falls Prevention Summit in London.

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