If there has recently been an accident or illness that has left you or another member of your household in need of the use of a wheelchair, you might need to start thinking about what adjustments you can make to your home to make getting around a little easier. Even if the individual uses a different piece of equipment to help them get around, it’s still worth considering making some changes to your home to make them more comfortable, and provide better support for their limited mobility. Here are five useful modifications you can do to your home to make it better for wheelchair access and beyond.
1. Widen Doorways
Wheelchairs take up a lot more space, and they’re not always easy to get around tight corners or through narrow doorways. This is why it’s worth thinking about having your doorways widened to accommodate for the extra space a wheelchair takes up, and to make maneuvering one in and out of a room much easier. You will need to hire a contractor to do this for you.
2. Ramps and Lifts
If access to your property requires you to walk up steps, you will need to install a ramp or platform lift to help those in a wheelchair get in. Constructing a wheelchair ramp by yourself is relatively easy to do, but if you’re not great at DIY buy one or ask a handyman to make a bespoke ramp, if that would be better suited to your needs. You may also want to think about getting a lift inside the property, many examples of these kinds of domestic lifts can be found at Terry Lifts.
3. Support Bars
The individual with limited mobility in your household might not require the use of a wheelchair, or only needs to use one occasionally. However, it’s still important to make sure there are things in place to help them as and when they need it. Support bars are great for helping people get up or to lower themselves down, which is why they are often seen in bathrooms. They should also be placed along your staircase and outdoors where there are steps and slopes for additional support.
4. Shower/Bath Seats
You should have support bars in your bathroom, especially in the shower and around the bath, but you might also need to get a bath or shower seat installed, as well. For those who can’t stand or can only do so for short periods, a shower/bath seat will allow them to wash independently, comfortably, and safely. They fold up neatly so they will not take up any space when other people are using the shower.
5. Larger Bathroom
You may want to consider extending the bathroom if it’s not that spacious, as this will make it easier for wheelchair users to get in and out. It will also mean there is plenty of room for someone else to be in there with them to help them use the facilities. Extending the kitchen and lowering the countertops would be another beneficial adjustment to your home.
To make your home more accessible for wheelchair users you should think about the modifications listed above and how they can help.