Sometimes, we just need a little extra support getting around our home. That’s exactly why grab rail installation is an important home modification for the elderly and those living with a disability.
Grab rails are an independent living aid that is secured to a wall in the areas of your home that you frequent. They are commonly placed in the bathroom and along steps to provide balance and stability support to prevent the risk of falls.
There are some things that you should consider before your grab rail installation to ensure that you have maximum support and comfort at home.
Where do you need grab rails?
Where you position your grab rail is more important than the grab rail itself. Grab rail installations are most commonly placed in the bathroom next to the toilet, in the shower or near the bath to help you maintain your balance whilst getting on or off the toilet or in and out of the shower or bath in slippery areas of your home.
These grab rails not only provide much needed stability support, but they take the pressure off sore or weak joints when completing these daily tasks. Installing grab rails on the walls of longer hallways or on steps within or leading to your home can aid with your stamina and overall mobility.
It’s important to take note of the areas in your home that you frequent so you can ensure that you’re supported where it matters most. If you aren’t sure where the best place for a grab rail installation is, our team at ELC Home Modifications specialises in home modifications for the elderly and can conduct a home assessment to give you the best advice tailored to your personal needs.
What type of grab rails are available for installation?
The most common grab rails are vertical, horizontal and diagonal. Vertical grab rails make it easier for you to pull yourself up and off the toilet, whilst horizontal grab rails make it easier for you to rest on, making it more comfortable and supportive when you need to apply your full body weight to it.
Some grab rails are specifically designed to help you easily use the toilet. These grab rails extend from the wall beside the toilet to safely transition on and off the toilet.
For a more tailored grab rail solution, it may be worth looking into custom-made grab bannister rails that are designed to perfectly match your home.
What size grab rail do I need?
Grab rails come in all shapes and sizes. Knowing what works grab rails are available for the space that you need is important to ensure you’re receiving the most support possible.
The most important component to pay attention to is the diameter of the grab rail. If the grab rail is too thick, or too thin, you won’t be able to get a solid, comfortable grip. The perfect fit is one that fits comfortably in your hand without placing any pressure on your arm or shoulders.
Australian Standards for mobility and access recommend a diameter of 32mm, however grab rails are also available in 25mm and sometimes up to 50mm. The right choice will depend on what feels right for you, or what your Occupational Therapist recommends.
Who should conduct your grab rail installation?
We know your partner is handy with the tools, but some things should be left to the professionals, especially when your safety is on the line. If grab rails are not installed correctly, they could pose a greater risk to your safety by detaching from the wall, or if not positioned correctly causing unnecessary strain on your joints, bones and muscles.
It’s recommended that, just like any other home modifications for the elderly, a professional installer should conduct your grab rail installation to give you the confidence you need to safely and independently navigate your home.
We know this can be overwhelming, but our team at ELC Home Modifications specialise in home modifications for the elderly, so we can help you decide on the best grab rail for your personal needs and complete the grab rail installation for you. We can even conduct a home assessment to help you remove any potential risks and tripping hazards to prolong your independence and safety at home.
Contact our team of specialists today!