I’ve had a setback that can be common among athletes my age. 57 on Monday (yikes). I’ve been active in some sport since I was young and have just worn my body down a “little”. Injuries happen to the best of us and our homes need to be ready to accommodate us when they do.
I’ve been injured before and know that it takes time to heal. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t discouragement and crabbiness along the way. Thank goodness I’m married to a saint.
The reason for this article is not an opportunity to complain, although it’s nice to share. It’s about my 3-story home that I’m able to get around easily, even though I’m injured. I’m fortunate enough to not be in a wheelchair, using crutches or a cane. But every step hurts and I don’t want to go any further than necessary. There have been all of the above referenced equipment used in this house at one time or another, so I know how this home’s accessibility works.
We aren’t totally equipped for long term care, but we do have some universal design elements incorporated that make the house accessible for people like me, who get injured once in a while to stay mobile. Once I get to the second floor, where all of the daily life happens, there are safety components for me to be independent.
There was a lot of thought about accessibility put into the design of this home. The halls and doorways are wide enough for a wheelchair to easily pass through. My shower has a built-in seat, grab bar and flexible shower head. None of these elements look commercial or industrial, and the unit was not expensive. It has a low curb and is a little roomier than the standard shower. Meaning anyone who’s crutched, wheeled or simply limped to my bathroom has been able to stay clean through their healing process.
The kitchen was designed specifically for accessibility, but you wouldn’t know that until you were in a wheelchair or using crutches. There is room for a wheelchair to pass through easily, with access to the stove, refrigerator, sink and dishes. The stove has the controls in front, so one doesn’t have to reach over hot burners to adjust the temperature. The refrigerator is a side by side, easily opened if seated. The faucet has a flexible nozzle to use easily from a seated position. These aren’t expensive items, or hard to add when remodeling. But they make a huge difference for someone who’s mobility has been reduced.
The beauty of my injury is that it will heal, and I’m mostly comfortable once I get to our living floor. What can you do to improve the safety of everyday living in your home and be accessible ready? I offer a free consultation if you’d like to find out.
Let me know how I can help, and I’ll be right over. As soon as this leg heals (should be right as rain after a little cortisone).