Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Grab Bars Suction Cup Style Reviewed

Lifestyle Changes For Seniors

One never knows when a lifestyle change warrants installing grab bars in our bathrooms. I would like to review a style that is easy to install, dependable, and won't break your budget. I'll also explain why my family suddenly found the need to even look for these handy bars that assist a person in getting up off of the toilet or getting out of the shower or tub, safely.

grab-bars-for-elderly
When a senior citizen falls, their lifestyle needs changes
image courtesy of pixabay.com 
Last month, I got that dreaded phone call from the hospital. The ER nurse informed me that my father had taken a serious fall and had been brought to the Emergency Room. They were certain that his left arm was badly broken and that surgery was most likely in his future. Naturally, I rushed to his side.

So, I'll spare you the gory details and only say that after three hours in surgery and a whole lot of hardware placed into his arm to hold the bones together, Dad is out of the hospital and currently staying in an assisted living facility to undergo physical therapy to try to regain mobility in his arm. Each day he seems to gain more of his strength back and is determined to get back to his own home. In order for him to go home, some things need to change in that environment. That is where my sudden need to find out about grab bars came into play.


Grab Bars Come in a Variety of Styles

 
As you can imagine, Dad will only have the use of one arm for quite a while. He is going to need to be able to keep his balance when doing simple things like bathing and getting up and down from the toilet. Obviously, we don't want him to fall again. So, in the hospital and the assisted living facility they have the grab bars that are the metal ones like we see in the handicap stalls in public bathrooms. When I began to look at those as an option, I have to admit that I was shocked at the cost of just one. I was willing to pay it, but I had other concerns besides the cost. Those metal ones have to be bolted to the wall and I wasn't feeling very confident in having them installed where Dad would need them. 

His shower/tub unit has the fiberglass surround. I worried about drilling holes in that. Would it cause the surround to have cracks and therefore leaks in the wall? What about studs for security in the installation?  What if the studs weren't in the place where the grab bars needed to be anchored? The last thing I wanted was for the bolts to pull out of the wall and cause unnecessary damage plus the fear of Dad falling.  

While searching for a solution, I came across the option of grab bars that use suction cups to adhere to the wall. Oh my goodness, I was so glad to find these! I won't have to worry about Dad's safety and we won't have to drill into his shower. They were so easy to place where he will need them and lock in place with a tab on the ends. I've since talked to a couple who installed them in their bathroom over a year ago and they are still secure and useful. That has eased my mind more than you can imagine!

So, now all I'm waiting on is for the doctor and physical therapist to say Dad is ready to go home. I'll be checking on him daily for a while, of course, but I won't have to worry about the time that I am not with him and his safety in the bathroom.

If you have an elderly family member, you might consider looking into these grab bars for them. Even if they haven't taken a nasty fall, something like this will aide them in having a safer way to take care of themselves while in their bathrooms.




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7 comments:

  1. Bev, I sincerely hope your dad will be able to come home soon. I will certainly pray for a speedy recovery. I'm sure he is stressing over the inconveniences as well as hurting. It is really thoughtful of you to seek out ways to assist him and helping him to continue to live independently and safely. Not only will it help him, but it will give you a greater peace of mind. I, myself, wouldn't mind having a grab bar near our bathtub. I doubt I would have considered the suction cup style without a recommendation. Very cool indeed!

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  2. Sorry to hear about your dad's accident and injuries. Glad he is healing and growing in strength. What a great product find. Nobody wants to drill into their tile or shower surround. Thanks for sharing such an important product that most homes can use to ensure the safety of all.

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  3. Bev First of all I'd like to wish your father a speedy recovery. My husband has needed grab bars in our bathroom for about 15 years. At first we used the suction cup type. We have had several different ones and they are great for him to steady himself when that was all he needed. As his disability progressed we found he needed to use the bars to pull himself up to a standing postion. The suction bars sometimes slipped under his weight. We found there are two types of suction bars one is mainly to steady yourself and the other (quite a bit more expensive) would sustain a greater amount of weight. Keep this in mind as you put up his bars.

    We now have permanent bars both vertical and horizontal ones throughout our bath and I find myself using them too. Even though I don't really need them they sure are great to steady yourself as you are getting dressed etc.

    Again best wishes for a speedy recovery for your Dad.

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  4. Bev, this review could not have come at a better time for me. My mother also had a bad fall just before Christmas and we need to get her some physical help and some aids to make her life easier. Grab Bars are just one of the items I need to get. I'm glad to hear that these suction bars work well as she is in an apartment and I don't think they would like us drilling holes in the walls. Thanks for a good answer to one of my problems. I appreciate it more than words can say!

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  5. Good to hear that your dad is recovering, Beverly. And pleased to have this knowledge about these suction cup grab bars. I don't actually need them yet, but I can foresee a time in the not too distant future that grab bars in the bathroom, particularly the bathtub, will be helpful and handy. I already use a non-slip shower mat in the bathtub.

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  6. Glad your dad is recovering and that his injury wasn't worse. I inherited my Mom's house, and she had a permanent grab bar in the shower here that I use. I have often used it to steady myself. I didn't know that suction grab bars existed. But I'm with Mary Beth. I'd be sure to check the weight limits, if any, before trusting them to do more than support. My husband is heavy and needs to put his full weight on whatever he uses to assist him in getting out of a chair or a car. He normally showers at the club where he swims, and it's equipped to handle those with special needs. Were he to be showing at home, I would only trust a permanent grab bar that could support his full weight. I would take a look at the suction grab bars and then look at the other options that will probably be suggested, as well, since they will probably include more permanent grab bars. Sometimes the easiest solution may not be the safest. I hope you will be able to update this after your dad has used these for a while. And I hope your confidence in them proves justified. I'm glad you have talked to someone who actually has used them for at least a year and found them reliable.

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  7. These are essential. My family just put a few in for a family member, and we feel more confident now. Very sorry about your dad's fall. So scary. We had a similar experience. We've put bars in odd spots as well, near the door going into the house in the kitchen as an extra place to grab onto. I wasn't aware of the suction cup ones though, hmmm, who knows could be something for me, way down the road, fingers crossed.

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