Did you know that (more than) one in three seniors over age 65 fall each year? The National Institute on Aging (NIA) reports that 80% of these falls are in the bathroom. To prevent such occurrences, many families consider walk-in bathtubs to mitigate the risk of injuries. Walk-in bathtubs are great considerations for the less mobile among us. For aging adults, falls can lead to debilitating injuries. Today’s post focuses on the different types of walk-in bathtubs available.
What are walk-in bathtubs? Walk-in bathtubs are an alternative to a traditional bathtub. Walk-in tubs have doors on them. They open up so the user doesn’t have to step over a leading edge like you might find on a conventional bathtub. Walk-in bathtubs can be safer alternatives for elderly and/or disabled individuals, but there are many different types of walk-in bathtubs. If you’re considering a new walk-in type tub, you need to know your options.
Types of Walk-In Bathtubs
A soaker tub is a basic walk-in bathtub. It has no hydrotherapy jets, and is generally less expensive than other models with additional features. This is considered an entry-level walk-in tub. A soaker tub comes with a leak-proof door, usually includes a grab bar and a hand-held shower accessory.
A hydrotherapy tub includes the leak-proof door, and some additional options that help with circulation in some folks. These tubs come with water jets (and usually air jets as well) in order to circulate and/or agitate the water. It feels good, and it can help loosen up stiff joints and muscles.
A bariatric tub is a walk-in bathtub made for larger individuals. You can purchase a bariatric tub with minimal features, or all the bells and whistles like water jets, etc.
Wheel-Chair Accessible Tub
The wheelchair accessible walk-in tub usually has an outward opening door frame, and allows for the easy transfer from the chair to the tub.
As you can see, there are many different types of walk-in bathtubs. Wheelchair accessible showers are another area of interest, and a topic for a later discussion. Be aware that these walk-in tubs can get expensive. Another consideration is the installation, which can range from $500 to $5,000 depending on what is necessary for the job. If you’re worried about the safety of your loved one at home and the bathroom is a concern, see a professional about adding industrial grade grab-bars, and other safety equipment in and around the bathtub or shower. You’ll be glad you did.