It can be a delicate subject to broach but one that can make a huge difference to a person?s confidence and independence ? user friendly toilets for the less abled.
There are many toileting aids available to help even the least abled people to maintain dignity and privacy in their home. These range from basic commodes right through to automatic shower toilets, a toilet even the most abled would be jealous of, mostly because it combines a toilet, bidet and warm air drying in one toilet unit. In other words, no manual intervention is required. A facility fit for Royalty.
But which solution is most suitable and how much do they cost? Well, lets get to the bottom of it (sorry I could not resist).
Before we get to this though there are many elements to consider including:
- Current access to toilet facilities
- Transferring on and off the toilet
- Tending to oneself
- Consideration for others in the house who will also need to use the same facilities
Special equipment can help with most situations but sometimes a larger home alteration is needed.
Types of toilet equipment
Generally, for those more abled but still struggling with movement there are aids such as:
- raised toilet seats – to lessen the distance the individual has to lower themselves allowing them to distribute their weight more comfortably. The best ones are the padded soft foam risers which can vary in price from £15-£50.
- toilet frames – which are placed around the toilet to allow the user to have sturdy hand holds to lower and lift themselves. These can be basic frames and start at around £20 and go up to padded handled, multi-adjusting frames which include seats that go over the original toilet and be priced at around £50. Some even have magazine holders.
- commodes – these come in a variety of styles from standard, wheeled and shower. Simply put, they are seats that are either frames or proper seats that have a bowl in them for toileting use. These can range in price dramatically depending on what sort you want. Prices start around £35 for a basic framed commode but go up to around £200 for ones that look like normal comfortable armchairs. The most common ones seem to be around the £35-£50 mark.
- Support/grab rails – depending on the level of disability and position of your existing toilet you may only need to install rails on the wall to allow the user to steady themselves when sitting and standing. Prices vary depending on the size and whether you want a wall or a floor mounting rail. For example, a basic wall mounted foldable rail can cost between £25-£40 while a floor mounted one can cost a little more at £40-£70.
- transfer equipment such as sliding boards and hoists – these are aids which we have covered in other blogs but still have a place in the toilet.
The full monty toilet setup
If you need a full toilet room revamp, with a setup similar to the accessible toilets you see out in public then a Doc M Pack style toilet setup may be best.
A standard Doc M Pack usually consists of a toilet (including cistern, seat etc.), a sink (including taps etc.) and five grab rails (for around and between the toilet and sink), and of course they have been made to comply with building/safety regulations. The average price for this is approximately £260, which unfortunately does not include fitting, which should be completed by a fully trained professional. When it comes to safety it is no time for someone to decide to have a go at DIY.
Whatever you choose it is best to make sure that the equipment is suitable for others in the house, or temporarily removable, if you are all using the same toilet.
As with most equipment it is best to try before you buy. If possible, visit a showroom to see how these work and what level of toileting equipment comfort you need. Also, don not forget that a lot of aids are available from social care services.
If you have experience in using any toileting aid and would like to share your experience with others, we would love to hear from you. Please get in touch here.