All shower stalls should be equipped with a sturdy, steel grab bar mounted to the wall either horizontally or vertically. Whether you do the installation yourself or have it done by a reputable contractor, you need to be sure that the bar you choose complies with the guidelines of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). For example, the ADA guidelines related to the size and placement of the bar state that the bar should have a diameter of 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches and that there should be 1 1/2 inches of space between the wall and the bar. The bar should be able to support up to 250 pounds.
If you have a bathtub instead of a shower stall, you should have a handle securely mounted to the side of your tub. You hold onto this handle as you enter and exit the tub so that you reduce the probability of slipping and falling. One type of handle is semicircular and attaches to the side of the tub with vice-like jaws. The handle extends to 14 inches above the point at which it is mounted.
Shower Stall Mat
If your shower stall does not have a non-slip surface, you are at risk for injury that can result from an accidental fall. A square-shaped, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) shower mat is inexpensive and provides you with sure footing as you stand in the shower. This type of mat is equipped with many suction cups that grip the shower floor securely, and the square shape adapts easily to a variety of shower stalls. The mats come in different colors, and they are very durable and easy to keep clean.
GFCI Electrical Outlet
Any electrical outlet that is within five feet of a source of water should have Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) protection. This means that an electrical outlet mounted on a wall adjacent to a bathroom sink should be a GFCI outlet. This type of outlet is designed to protect you from getting an electrical shock because it has a sensor that can detect a difference between the amount of electrical current flowing into and out of any appliance that is plugged into the outlet. Whenever the current flow in does not equal the current flow out, the GFCI outlet will immediately shut down the circuit. For example, if you are holding a defective electric shaver with wet hands, there is a possibility that electric current could flow to you. If this happens, the GFCI outlet will sense that the current flow out of the shaver is not balanced with the flow into it. The power will instantly be cut.
According to the National Safety Council, hundreds of people are injured each year because they slip and fall in the bathroom. In any home, the bathroom presents safety challenges that can be overcome with a little thought and planning. Bathroom safety products currently on the market are relatively inexpensive and can help prevent you from slipping and falling as you go about your daily bathroom routine.
Author Pam Johnson is a hospitality professional who maintains a lot of bathrooms, and always has to make sure that those bathrooms are safe for her guests. Her job can be found on the list of Top 10 Highest Paying Careers in Hospitality.