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Why Convert to a Walk in Shower


Safety stats and stories

  • After the age of 65, 6 out of 10 visits a person will make to a hospital emergency room are a result of a fall in or around the home. (Consumer Product Safety Council)
  • 30% of all people over the age of 65 fall each year. (According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons)
  • 50% of older adults hospitalized with a hip fracture are unable to return home or live independently again. (American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons)
  • Over 60% of prescribed medication in the U.S. is not taken as directed. (American Medical Association)
  • 25% of all hospital and nursing home admissions by seniors (persons 65 years of age or older) each year is due to their failure to take their prescription medications as directed. (American Medical Association)
  • Failure to properly take prescribed medication the number one reason for hospital readmissions.(American Medical Association)
  • 45% of all household accidents resulting in serious injuries take place in the bathroom. 20% occur in the kitchen. (Consumer Safety Council)
  • Subscribers of Medical Emergency Response Systems, like ResponseLINK, have fewer hospital admission and shorter stays after they subscribe. This allows them to live independently longer. (study by The New England Journal of Medicine)
  • The mortality rate is 5 times higher for people who lay incapacitated for 12 hours versus those that get immediate help. (study by The New England Journal of Medicine)
  • For elderly people who live alone, becoming incapacitated and unable to get help is the common event which usually marks their ability to live independently. (New England Journal of Medicine)

10 Steps to avoid falls

40% of all falls are preventable!

  1. Be Aware of Your Surroundings Use a cane or walker if it has been prescribed. Walk slowly and if you don’t feel well, ask someone to help you.
  2. Get Plenty of Rest, Proper Nutrition, and Hydration After the age of 65, 6 out of 10 visits a person will make to a hospital emergency room are a result of a fall in or around the home. (Consumer Product Safety Council)
  3. Simplify Make your environment safer. Get rid of anything that could make you trip and fall. These can include clutter, excess furniture, etc. Arrange furniture so you have a clear pathway between rooms. Remove low coffee tables, magazine racks, footstools, and plants from pathways.
  4. Avoid Trip-Ups Remove floor hazards such as area rugs, extension cords, and/or other things that can create obstacles in your path.
  5. Clearance Make sure you have 36 inches to 42 inches clearance in your walking path.
  6. Hold On Hold on to steady furniture if you are unsteady on your feet.
  7. Pay Attention Pay close attention to the FALL trouble spots. Be aware that 45% of all household injuries take place in the bathroom and 20% take place in the kitchen. Avoid falls by equipping these areas with grab bars near sinks, toilets, and showers. Wear safe footwear. Make sure that the soles of your hoes are not worn since they can cause you to slip. If you wear slippers around the house, make sure they have rubber soles.
  8. Exercise Ask your primary care physician or discharge planner to prescribe an appropriate exercise plan for you to help improve balance, gait, and muscle tone.
  9. Lights Keep your home well lit. A dark home is a dangerous home. Make sure that all of the areas you walk in are illuminated at all times of the day and evening. Pay extra attention to areas where you frequently walk through like pathways to and from the bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen. Keep a flashlight handy at all times in case the power fails.
  10. Medication Take medications as directed, on time, and only the dosage prescribed. Do not skip medications. Report any side effects or negative reactions you experience to your primary care physician. Remember, failure to properly take medication is a major cause of alls and fall related injuries. Follow the simple advice on the next page to improve compliance.


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Useful Information
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The purpose of this checklist is to check your home for hazards that could result in a fall. If you answer “no” to the questions, you have already taken action to reduce your risk of falling. If you answer “yes” to the questions, you may want to consider making the recommended change or adaptation to reduce your risk of falling.
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Bathroom No Yes Tips
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Is the path from the bedroom to the
bathroom dark?

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Are towel racks used to balance or grab onto while getting in or out of the bathtub/shower?

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Is it difficult to stand during a shower?

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Is it difficult to adjust faucets?

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Are the shower floor and/or bathtub slippery?

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Is there any water on the floor after a bath/shower? Are there leaks from the tub/shower

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Is it necessary to reach far or turn around to get towels, shampoo, or soap?

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Is it difficult to get on and off the toilet?

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Bedroom No Yes Tips
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Is there a long reach from the bed to a light?

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Is it necessary to get our of bed or reach far to use the telephone?

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Is it necessary to get out of bed or reach far to get eyeglasses?

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Is there telephone, light, or television cords running along the floor on the walkway?

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Is there clutter (clothes, shoes, books, etc.) on the floor?

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Is it common to get up many times during the night to use the bathroom?

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Are your sheets, blankets, or dust ruffle lying on the floor?

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Kitchen No Yes Tips
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Are there floor mats or rugs in the kitchen?

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Is it necessary to reach for, bend over, or climb on a stool to get commonly used items or foods?

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Is there liquid, food, or clutter on the floor?

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Living Areas No Yes Tips
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Do carpets, rugs, and floor coverings have frayed corners or rolled up edges?

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Are there throw rugs in walkways?

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Are chairs and couches low to the ground?

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Is it necessary to get up to answer the phone?

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Do you have to walk over or around cords/wires?

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Are there newspapers, boxes, or shoes on the floor?

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Do you need to walk around furniture to get through the living area?

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Do you have to reach up to pull cords on lights or ceiling fans?

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Tub to Shower Conversion
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