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Bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability

From lighting to flooring, read these bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability ideas.

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Include lots of lighting in a bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability project. Photo by A&A Design Build Remodeling, Inc. on Flickr.If someone you love is in the early stages of a cognition disability, like Alzheimer's disease or dementia, there are home remodeling steps you can take for them. Bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability may be one of the first things that you need to consider.

Bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability can start with a few simple steps. Ideally, you need to create a bathroom environment that is safe, yet allow residents to retain their independence. To accomplish this, focus on living aids that assist with memory as well as allow people with cognition disabilities to call for help as needed. 

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If your loved one is having trouble remembering things, you may want to start with tools that can help to jog their memory. Placing colored tape on the hot and cold water taps on the sinks and tubs can help your loved one tell the difference between water temperatures.

If you are worried that they may accidentally scald themselves, install bath thermometers or regulators. These tools allow you or a caretaker to check the temperature of the water to ensure that it is safe.

When remodeling a bathroom, many people install independent living aids like grab bars in tubs, skid resistant bath mats in showers or adaptive toilets. Also focus on memory aids.

You can buy talking clocks and automated pill dispensers to help your loved one remember when to bathe or when to take their medicine. If there are a lot of cleaning supplies or other potentially toxic products in the bathroom, you may want to take steps to ensure that your loved one is safe from those items. By applying stickers or warning symbols on cabinet doors, you can create reminders about what these products are and how they can be dangerous. Locks are another option.  

Unfortunately, many accidents happen in the bathroom. You need to ensure that if an accident happens, your loved one will be able to get the help that they need. There are medical response systems that allow injured people to call for help by pushing a button on a pendant. Unfortunately, these systems are not always ideal for people with conigtion disabilities.

You may want to consider an alternative type of monitoring system. If you live nearby, a baby monitor will allow you to monitor your loved one's activities. However, if you need to monitor them remotely, add a webcam.

A smart toilet is another option. These are bidet-style toilets. If your family member is having trouble remembering to clean themselves, then with a push of a button the toilet will take care of it for you or the caretaker.

Interior design techniques can help calm your love one as well. For instance, mirrors can be upsetting to some with a cognitive disability. If this is so for your family member, then remove the bathroom mirror and perhaps add a piece of art that the person likes. Indoor plants are a great addition, as well as colorful towels and such.

Residential renovation can be one of the most important parts of accommodating disabilities. Bathroom remodeling for a cognitive disability is less expensive than those for a physical disability. Yet, many of the same bathroom remodeling ideas for physical disabilities can be applied for those with cognitive issues. A few well-placed reminders and a monitoring system that allows them to get help as needed may be the best initial steps to take. 

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Photo credit: A&A Design Build Remodeling, Inc. via Compfight CC.