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Special baths for people with disabilities

A number of factors should be carefully considered if you are planning to replace an ordinary domestic bath with a new bath which is suitable for a disabled person.

First consider the space available and the space required by the new bath. It might seem obvious but the space required by the new bath is one of its critical points. 

Also consider the level of disruption whilst work is in progress in installing the bath. Alternative arrangements may need to be considerable and planned for the disabled person while the bathroom is out of action.

Aftercare of the equipment, particularly servicing and maintenance if the bath has moving parts needs consideration too.

Walk-In bath
With a walk-in baths you simply open a door and walk inside. The doors on the baths has factory fitted integral which prevents leakage.

Installing a walk in bath can greatly improve your independence within your own home, by allowing you to safely enter and exit the bath without the need for assistance. You simply open the door on the side or front of the bath step in and close the door. Modern walk in baths are easy to operate and easy to install. There is a wide range of models and sizes to suit most bathrooms and users requirement.

Bear in mind that with a walk in baths you sit in the bath when it fills with water and drains after you have bathed. Therefore both the fill time and drain time is important. The quicker the better 

Different bath designs/makes will have a slightly different step in height. This is the lip which you will need to step over to enter the bath when the door is open. If you suffer for mobility issues the lower the step in height the better.

Doors open either inwards or outwards. Inwards opening doors form a better seal when the bath is full of water as the pressure of the water pushes the door tight shut. 

Note that should an emergency arise you may not be able to get out of the bath quickly since it will need to be drained before the door opens. A bath with an outward opening door is usually smaller than the inward opening bath and also allows emergency exit even if the tub is filled with water.
Always remember that convenience and comfort should be your main priority when you are purchasing walk-in bathtubs.

Bath Lift
If you have trouble getting in and out of the bath you may consider a powered bath lift.

A retro-fitted bath lift needs no alterations to your bathroom.

The bath lift will assist in entering and exiting by lowering you gently, and when you have finished bathing, raising up level with the side enabling you to twist your body and lower your legs outside the bath and stand. 

A bath lift offers a suitable solution to bathing issues if your mobility still allows you to twist and stand easily, if you have greater mobility issues then a walk in bath may be a better solution.

Getting in and out of your bath tub should not be an intimidating experience, especially if you have balance problems and are prone to slipping. Many individuals today have turned to installing bath lifts to prevent accidents and injuries from occurring. These are mechanical devices that can be installed into your tub in order to lower you into it or raise you out of it without the worries of slip and fall accidents happening. They can be battery operated or mains powered. These are especially beneficial to the elderly and those individuals that are experiencing mobility problems.

For Children
Bath time for children is usually an opportunity to play with parents, sisters and brothers. This should not be any different for a child with additional needs - although supportive equipment such as a bath chair may restrict the range of suitable play activities.

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