Apr 162011
 


When considering a shower seat you have to take into account the needs of the person who will be using the chair. It is important to realize that a simple shower stool may not be sufficient for the requirements of a person who has a physical restriction. But whether temporarily or permanently disabled, there’s no reason someone can’t experience the benefits of a hot shower.

Various types of shower seats are available that make it much easier for someone who is physically challenged to sit comfortably and safely in a shower.
Drive Stainless Steel Rehab Shower Commode with Open Front

First, for people who use a wheelchair, shower commode chairs are available. This special type of wheelchair can be made of waterproof PVC or may have an aluminum frame and stainless steel hardware. These chairs also have large wheels so the person in it can get themselves in and out of the shower. What’s more, many are lightweight and can be folded so they can be easily moved.

A commode chair often also has a special hole that permits the chair to double as a toilet. Underneath the chair is a removable container that can be taken out and cleaned as required.

Guardian Economy Non-Padded Transfer Bench
A person who is in a wheelchair may need, or prefer, to have a transfer bench. This is an adapted version of the standard shower seat. The design of the bench allows a person to move from their wheelchair onto the bench and then slide themselves into the shower. Many models allow you to adjust the seat height.

 

If you are concerned about water getting onto the floor, you don’t have to worry as many of these benches have a feature which allows the shower curtain to be pulled across. These benches are very useful for not only the disabled person, but also their caregiver. With this type of unit in place, the caregiver will have virtually no lifting to do. In fact, many people who are confined to a wheelchair can get in and out of the shower using one of these benches with no assistance at all. Bradley 9571 Bariatric Shower Seat, Right Hand Configuration

If you are looking at a long-term care situation, you should think about a wall mounted or fold down shower seat. These are extremely convenient and useful. Wall mounted shower seats can be conveniently folded out of the way when they are not needed. Many of these seats are made of a phenolic, which is a very durable long lasting plastic compound. If you plan to get a wall mount, there are a number of different features available, including safety locks, and arms.

A handicap shower seat is ideal for any person who needs assistance getting in and out of the shower or who just wants to have privacy for taking a shower. Replacing or modifying a shower or tub can be very costly, but the addition of the appropriate shower chair can make major renovations or alternations unnecessary. And the range of options for a handicap shower seat enables the physically challenged person to be involved in making their own choice.

The above seats can be purchased at:

Jul 032009
 


If you are physically challenged because you are overweight or permanently or temporarily physically disabled, you can still experience the comfort of a shower.

The products available to help you include:
• Bariatric shower seats
• Wheeled or shower/commode chairs
• Shower transfer benches

Bariatric shower seats

The term “bariatric,” if you are not familiar with it, refers to weight. Simply put, these are shower seats that can hold more weight than the standard shower seat.

Bariatric shower seats are intended for people from 250 pounds and up. There are chairs available for people who weigh up to 700 pounds. These chairs are built to provide extra stability to the larger person in the shower.

Typically, the seat size will be wider than a standard shower seat to accommodate a larger person. Some bariatric shower chairs also have backrests and cross braces for additional stability and support. Be sure the legs of the seat are adjustable so the overweight person can move the seat to a position where his or her legs can also provide support when sitting.

Wheeled or shower/commode chairs

Wheeled shower seats, also called shower/commode chairs, allow people with disabilities to move themselves to the shower and provide seating when taking a shower. Additionally, this type shower chair can be used as a raised toilet seat as these chairs have a removable commode pail.

Wheels should be a major consideration when buying this type of chair. They should be large to accommodate easier movement across various types of floor surfaces. Most will come with swivel casters and safety locks.

Shower/commode chairs that tilt are also available. This allows caregivers to adjust the chair to more easily reach the person in it. The ability to adjust this type of shower seat is important when considering the growth of special needs children as well as the comfort of the adult user.

Shower Transfer Bench

Typically used for transferring from a wheelchair to a bathtub, this type of shower seat can also be used for moving from a wheelchair to a shower.

Shower transfer benches are usually one piece with a long seat in two parts, and four legs. The person moves from their wheelchair to the transfer bench, which is the outside piece, then slides to the actual seat.

Available options usually include padded seating and removable or adjustable backrests and armrests.

There are also sliding shower transfer benches. In these the person transfers from their wheelchair to a shower seat. The seat then slides, most often on rails, to a position where they can more comfortably take a shower. Some shower transfer benches have swivel chairs to add to the user’s convenience.

Typical features include a safety belt and a handle that can be attached to either side of the seat.

Another type of shower transfer seat is a wall-mounted shower seat that swings into the shower. First, the user transfers onto the seat from outside the shower. Then the chair swivels into the shower. When their shower is finished, the user swivels back out of the shower.

Specialty shower seats such as these help physically challenged people be comfortable when taking a shower.