Thinking about buying a walk-in tub? Maybe it would be much easier to give your disabled mother a bath if you had a walk-in tub. Or maybe you live by yourself and arthritis makes it hard to get in and out of the bath, so a walk-in tub makes perfect sense.
No matter your reason for shopping for a walk-in tub, you can rest easy knowing they are available in many styles and sizes. There are numerous features available on the tubs, as well, some of which come standard and some don’t. Also, keep in mind that some of the tubs are designed with a specific purpose, like the bariatric walk-in tub that is designed for bariatric patients, the elderly, and the disabled.
Here’s a look at a few FAQs about bariatric walk-in tubs and their answers. You can use them as a guide when you go shopping.
What Is a Bariatric Walk-In Tub?
A bariatric walk-in tub is designed to accommodate the needs of bariatric patients. Most walk-in bathtubs are about the same size of a regular bathtub, but bariatric tubs are usually wider. These tubs have wider entrances as well, making it easier to enter and exit.
Bariatric tubs are different from most other walk-in tubs because they can hold people weighing up to 600+ pounds. Regular walk-in tubs can only hold people who weigh no more than 300 pounds.
Who Benefits From Using a Bariatric Walk-In Tub?
These tubs are made specifically for people who weigh more than 300 pounds, the elderly, and the disabled. Most of the tubs have a built-in seat, easily allowing you to sit down as you bathe.
What Safety Features are Available?
Bariatric walk-in tubs usually come with several safety features. A textured floor keeps you from sliding as you enter and exit. Grab bars and knob handles placed throughout the tub make it simple to enter and exit through an extra-wide door.
It is recommended to install bariatric-approved grip bars on walls directly connected to the tub. When exiting the tub, it is sometimes easier and safer when grip bars are hanging from attached walls.
What Types of Accessories are Available?
Bariatric walk-in tubs are available in basic versions as well as premium. The version and brand you purchase will impact the accessories you can use. This is why you should make a list of the features and accessories you need. You can show the list to sellers of the tubs to help them know whether they can meet your needs. Some of the more popular accessories for these tubs are:
- Heated seat back
- Water jet sanitation system
- Silicone seat cushion
- Micro Bubble System
- Silicone pillow
- Heated water jets
Are the Tubs Available With Wheelchair Accessibility?
Bariatric tubs are available with wheelchair accessibility. Because these tubs are usually larger than most walk-in tubs, this makes it easier to feature an extra-wide door. You can roll a wheelchair straight up to the wide door entrance and enter the tub.
Can You Shower and Take a Bath in the Tubs?
Yes, a bariatric walk-in tub can be installed with a shower head. Depending on your preference, you can hang the shower head from the wall or leave a hand-held shower head in the tub. Some people even use them with a steam shower.
When Should You Buy a Bariatric Walk-In Tub?
A lot of people wait until they need a bariatric walk-in tub to buy one. These tubs are more expensive than regular tubs, but they also come with an advanced function. If you don’t need a walk-in tub right now, you should consider when you will need one.
Are you only five years from being a senior citizen? Do you have an illness or disability that impacts your mobility and it continues to get worse? Is it possible that an elderly parent will live with you in the next few years?
If you said yes to any of those questions, then it’s time to shop for a bariatric walk-in tub.
A lot of homeowners install a bariatric walk-in tub many years in advance of when they actually need them. These tubs can feature everything from water jets to silicone seating. And best of all, once it's needed, the walk-in tub is already there.
Create a list of the features and accessories you want your bariatric walk-in tub to have. When speaking with sellers, show your list to each of them. The seller will tell you whether they have a tub that meets your list of criteria.