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GET RID OF YOUR STRESS – IT’S NOT HELPING YOU

Make Your Bathroom Safe

Courtesy of www.redbeacon.com

by Alan Knight


The bathroom, usually the smallest room in your home, is statistically the most dangerous. A 2008 study conducted by the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, found that about 235,000 people over the age of 15 visited emergency rooms due to injuries that occurred in the bathroom. These injuries are not only limited to slips and falls. There’s risk of electrocution if an electrical appliance falls into water as well as the risk of poison since many chemical products are often housed in the bathroom. Don’t forget those nasty cuts from the sharp items that abound in the bathroom like razors, or even hand held mirrors that can shatter when dropped. This is beginning to sound like a hazard zone but it really doesn’t have to be. Your bathroom can and should be a safe space for people of all ages.

Children, adults and especially seniors are vulnerable and can be at risk if thoughtful precautions are not taken. You can start with the easy improvements that require little to no expense and move up to more extensive changes or upgrades if necessary. This is your family’s safety and that is always a number one priority. Let’s start with the small stuff.

POISON CONTROL

Can you believe the second leading cause of home injury death is poisoning? It leads to about 5,000 fatalities a year.

Courtesy of  www.slideshare.net

 Most people (I hope) want to make sure their bathrooms are as germ- and bacteria-free as possible. It’s not an easy task because frankly, humans harbor all kinds of bacteria and germs and we leave are mark everywhere. You possibly use bleach or possibly ammonia and other strong cleaners with chemicals to ensure you rid your bathroom of the pesky germs and odors. Did you know that if bleach or ammonia are mixed together they make a potentially deadly gas? Either one of them alone can cause burns or respiratory problems to people who are generally sensitive to chemicals.  Don’t forget about drain cleaners. Many can burn skin if touched and it is essential to be very careful when using them.


If you have these items in your bathroom or anywhere else in your home (like the kitchen), it is essential to have them clearly marked. Educate your young ones on the perils of touching these chemicals. Ideally, if you have very young children, store them in a place where they can’t reach or even better, under lock and key.

DON’T BE SHOCKED!

I mean that literally. You keep your blow dryers and curling irons in the bathroom. You may have an electric toothbrush on your countertop. Any of these items can cause electrocution if they fall into a tub or a sink filled with water. Beware of damaged or frayed cords as they can be another hazard especially if they are lying on a wet countertop.

Courtesy of  www.mayfieldplumbingblog.com

The safety precautions are common sense though not everyone follows them. Make sure all electrical appliances are unplugged and away from any water when not in use. Don’t use these appliances near water, please. It is too easy to cause an unnecessary accident and is easily avoidable.


BE SHARP WITH YOUR RAZORS

As you know, young children love to explore. They are in awe of all of their surroundings and are fascinated by the littlest trinkets and gadgets. Some of those gadgets should not be within their reach and the razor is one of them. Simply put them in a cabinet that is out of reach and don’t leave them in the shower or tub. Keep your children cut-free.

PROTECT AGAINST THE NUMBER ONE CULPRIT- FALLS

Falls are the leading cause of home injury deaths with about 6,000 fatalities per year. Seniors are especially vulnerable. About one in three seniors who suffer a fall, will incur injuries that lead to hospitalization. There are many ways to protect against these accidents and some are fairly simple remedies.

1.      Rugs can be a hazard but they don’t have to be. Throw rugs in the bathroom enhance the décor and add a little color and luxury. They can also cause you to trip or fall when they slip. Your bathroom can still be plush and safe if you purchase non-skid rugs. Double sided industrial tape placed beneath the rug will keep it safely secured to the floor.

Courtesy ofwww.azx7.com

2.      Light it up. Good lighting is essential in every bathroom. But night lights are the key to adding another safety element to that space. How many times have you woken up to use the bathroom and ended up bumping into the wall while you are half asleep? Install night lights to guide you safely into the bathroom and prevent unnecessary accidents.


3.      Grab on to those grab bars. These bars may be one the most useful preventative items you can purchase for your bathroom. Install them near the toilet area to allow ease of transfer. Getting up and down onto the toilet can be especially difficult for seniors. You should not expect that toilet paper holders, towel racks or wall-mounted sinks can reasonably support one’s weight. Proper installation is the key to safety. They should not just be mounted onto the sheetrock but instead, firmly attached to a wall stud. This can be a do-it-yourself project but for those lacking skills of a carpenter, professional installation might be a good idea. I’ll discuss a little more about grab bars for the bath/shower area in the next section.

SCRUB A DUB DUB- DON’T FALL GETTING OUT OF THE TUB

That says it all. Most falls in the bathroom occur while getting in or out of the bathtub and shower. Seniors are most susceptible due to their lack of agility. There are a few precautions you can take to make the area much safer for everyone.
1.      Use grab bars. As I mentioned previously, these need to be properly installed for paramount safety. Knowing there is something to hold onto while getting in and out of the tub can provide an extra level of comfort.
2.      Rubber mats are all the rage. Well, that might be an exaggeration but they definitely have their place in preventing slipping in the tub or shower.
Image courtesy of TubKing.com
3.      Sit comfortably and safely. Shower seats and chairs should be purchased with care. Make sure they have rubber and suction feet to prevent slippage.
4.      A hand held shower head makes bathing a blast. Whether you are a senior or someone who is just a bit tired after a long day, it is pretty relaxing to sit in the shower and be able to control the placement of the shower. It does provide an added layer of protection and safety.

THE ULTIMATE SCORE

The emergence of walk-in tubs and showers really is all the rage. These are amazing additions to any bathroom and will provide years of comfort and safety. Literally, you can walk right in without having to climb. They come with many additions, like built in chairs, removable shower heads and built-in grab bars. They are not only extremely functional, but quite elegant and are an upgrade that will pay off for many years to come.

In this article, I provided you with many precautionary measures you can take to make your bathroom a safer place for people of all ages and give everyone in your home more peace of mind. 

If you would like a FREE copy of our eBook “The Walk-In Tub Buyers Guide”, fill out the form below and we will send it to you.

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Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and my brother, Alan, who heads up Tub King, will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.
Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and  SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville, Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. To contact Tub King directly, call (800)843-4231 or email alan@tubking.com. 

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DOES YOUR BATHROOM REFLECT YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?

by Alan Knight

Is your bathroom so impersonal and uninviting that it makes you feel like you just walked into a Motel 6?  Is it just a functional room without any character or pizzazz? Does it reflect your style, charm or whimsical side? Does its style really suit your home and your preferences? If you answered yes to the first two questions and a resounding NO to the last two, then it may be time to consider how to make this room a reflection of your personal style.

Image courtesy of TubKing.com
The days are gone when your bathroom was considered a small, functional room. Today, upgrading a bathroom can not only give you a sanctuary that can reduce the stresses of the day, but it can also bring added value to your home. In fact, it isn’t unusual to recoup about 75% of bathroom remodeling costs when you sell your home. A remodeled bathroom can be a feature that makes your home stand out from the crowd.

People are working more now than in the past and need a personal refuge. What does your personal refuge look like? Would you like a sleek, modern style or a more rustic country theme? Is a spa just what the doctor ordered? 
Let’s discover how you can transform this space 
into a personal and comfortable part of your home.

PICK A COLOR, ANY COLOR 

You can make an immediate difference in the look and feel of your bathroom by changing the color scheme. Texture and color play and large role in the bathroom’s style.  Lighter, muted colors give the sense that the room is larger, while darker colors give the room a more intimate feel..A recent blog in Psychology now stated that, “Artists and interior designers have long understood how color can dramatically affect moods, feelings and emotions. It is a powerful communication tool and can be used to signal action, influence mood and cause physiological reactions.” (http://psychology.about.com/od/sensationandperception/a/colorpsych.htm)

Clawfoot Tub courtesy of TubKing.com
Choose the color that makes you feel calm and at peace. Reactions to color is an entirely personal preference.  Remember, you’re creating your personal refuge; the space where you will go to dissolve your daily stresses.  Once you have decided upon the color, you can see the space transform. You have a theme that will guide your decision-making.

SHOULD WE START WITH THE SMALL STUFF?

1)      Don’t skimp on your towels. Splurging on luxurious towels will make a big splash in your bath. There’s nothing more chic than 100 percent Egyptian cotton towels. Instead of regular sized towels go for the oversized bath sheets. You will look forward to having these ultra-soft towels wrapped around you after a long, relaxing bath or shower. Plus, they’ll add a touch of luxury without adding a lot of expense.
2)      Use calming aromatherapy. What do you first notice when you walk into a spa? Is it the calming aroma of scented oils and potpourri that instantly melts away your stress? You can create the same effect in your own bathroom with your favorite aromatherapy scents. Fill decorative jars with potpourri and other dried herbs. Make your own personalized scents using Epsom salt and essential oils. Place the jars around the bathroom and don’t forget the scented candles.
3)      Baskets and decorative storage trays give you more space and organization. Use decorative baskets to store your new Egyptian cotton towels and show off your good taste. Storage trays come in all shapes and materials that match every style from rustic to modern. They not only add a bit of luxury and style but are functional and will keep your bathroom organized.

 BRIGHTEN UP WITH A LIGHTING FIXTURE

A new lighting fixture is a simple and affordable way to add a bit of luxury to your bathroom. Whether you’re seeking a modern, sleek look or total opulence, there are lighting fixtures for every budget and style.

IT’S OKAY TO BE VAIN WITH YOUR BATHROOM VANITY

The vanity can define the look and feel of the bathroom. It is a statement piece and you’ll want it to reflect your personal style. Of course, it must be the correct size for your bathroom, but you can find vanities for every bathroom size while still making a statement. You can shop online for a specific size, knowing you are staying within your limits.

Let’s discuss some of your options.
1)      Free standing vanities- These are the most common type of vanity as they are “freestanding” and seated on the floor while attached to the wall with screws.
2)      Floating vanities- These are mounted on the wall and while they save floor space, they also give the bathroom a more modern feel.
3)      Open Space vanities- They feature open storage space and are not covered by cabinet doors. Open space vanities have an “airy” feel.
4)      Vessel sinks- These vanities feature basins that sit on the counter top and evoke a minimalist look.

SOAK UP THE LUXURY WITH A FREE STANDING TUB

Double Slipper Tub by TubKing.com
Nothing says elegance more than a free standing tub. They can be angular or curved, but undeniably elegant and lavish. They come in different materials and finishes such as wood, enamel, cast iron, acrylic, stone or copper and feature accents like old-fashioned claw feet.

A free standing tub can be put anywhere in your bathroom, making it a focal point. The beauty is they are finished on all sides so the placement is only guided by the space. You can decorate around the tub making the whole bathroom look more opulent. Add a decorative chair to hang your luxe towel and lay your slippers. Are you finally seeing your sanctuary materialize?

FROM MUNDANE TO OPULENT 

You don’t have to settle for mundane when it comes to your bath. You can personalize it by adding some luxurious accessories like candles, towels and decorative jars to give some flair. A new lighting fixture will add elegance or give a modern look and feel. A free standing tub and vanity area are focal points that can help to make your bathroom your own private sanctuary and show off your personal style.

Transforming your bathroom into a calming sanctuary and a reflection of your personality largely depends on your budget and your space. Even little things can make a big difference if you need to start small and dream big.

Until the next time. 

Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and my brother, Alan, who heads up Tub King, will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.
Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and  SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville, Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. To contact Tub King directly, call (800)843-4231 or email alan@tubking.com. 

Becoming Your Parents Parents

Courtesy of  wheelsandfeet.wordpress.com

by Alan Knight

Watching a loved one deteriorate, whether it is physically, mentally or both, is a very difficult process. You have wonderful memories of your parents in their prime at family dinners and outings, giving of themselves and creating memories that last a lifetime. They raised their families and worked hard to provide for their loved ones. They were war veterans, entrepreneurs, musicians, doctors, teachers, and so much more. They made major contributions to society with their work ethic and love for their family. It was difficult to imagine they would ever grow old. For that matter, you probably thought you would be young forever and always have the comfort of knowing you would always have that shoulder to lean on.

Now the roles have reversed. You are seeing changes in your parents that make you worry and even occasionally step up to take a little more control of their lives. They don’t want to feel like a burden, so it becomes a sensitive issue. It’s a fact that people are living much longer than they did in the past.  However, it’s also difficult for most people to ask for help when they need it most. Admitting they need help represents a loss of independence. This can lead to denial.  Denial is the unrealistic hope that a problem is not really happening and will go away by itself. “Denial plays a major role and signs get ignored,” says Paul Hogan, Founder and Chairman of Home Instead Senior Care.
Image courtesy of caregiveraction.org

The process of becoming the caregiver can become overwhelming, both financially and emotionally.  Whether you are prepared for this task or not, you will be faced with making some major decisions associated with their care. Most of us would prefer to allow our loved ones to stay in the comfort of their homes and studies show that 80 to 90 percent of elderly people prefer to stay at home as long as possible. You can be an integral part of giving your parents the independence they need while having some input to ensure they are safe and secure.

MAKING FOOD PREP EASY AND SAFE

As our loved ones age, preparing food can be a potentially dangerous task. Gas burners and ovens can be left on, shaky hands can lead to cuts and burns, water can be left running and so on. Under normal circumstances, accidents do happen in the kitchen. Did you know that home fires started by cooking equipment kill about 480 people a year? Much of that is preventable since it’s often due to leaving cooking equipment unattended. As our loved ones age, they become more forgetful and the likelihood of these accidents increases, which is exactly what we are trying to help them avoid.

Eating healthy is an essential part of keeping our bodies and minds in top form and to guard against illness. As people age, they often tend to choose easier methods to cook meals and that may often mean eating more canned food and frozen dinners that have little nutritional value. As I already mentioned, accidents can occur if they are trying to do too much food preparation.

A great option is home food delivery. There are a number of delivery services that can deliver healthy home cooked meals to your loved one’s door. They can also cater to the special dietary needs of their clients. This is definitely a more expensive option, but it can also be used as a safe supplement rather than the primary source of food for your loved ones.

Cook in bulk for your family and prepare portions for your parents. Thank goodness for the microwave oven. A great way to be efficient and economical is to cook in bulk. Don’t make a pot of chili that feeds four; make it so it feeds eight people and put it into individual containers to bring to your parent’s home where they can eat or freeze it. Seniors know how to use a microwave and it provides a much safer option than using the stove or oven. More importantly, they will be eating healthy, nutritional meals that you cooked, while at the same time reducing the chances of causing an accident in the kitchen.

PREP THE HOME FOR SAFETY– DON’T LET THE BATHROOM BE THE CULPRIT

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every year about 285,000 people visit emergency rooms because of injuries suffered in the bathroom. More than a third of these injuries occur when bathing or showering.  There are many ways to make a bathroom safer for your loved ones in order to decrease the chances of falls which can be debilitating and potentially deadly for seniors.

1.      Install grab bars near the toilet and other places where one must stand for a period of time. Tile floors are slippery when wet and bathroom spaces often do not have good footing. Seniors can have issues with balance, making them particularly susceptible to falls in the bathroom.

2.      Climbing in and out of a bathtub can be an ordeal as a person ages. A bathtub in the home can be altered with safety features or even replaced with a more modern and safe version such as walk-in bathtubs and safety showers. This is an expense that is well worthy of consideration since it can contribute to the independence of older adults and give them the privacy they desire when taking care of their bathing needs.

Safety shower image courtesy of TubKing.com

These showers and tubs are literally made so you can walk into them without a climb. They have built-in seats and removable shower heads so one can sit comfortably and safely without fear of slipping. Can you imagine how independent your loved ones might feel knowing they are safer in the bathroom and are able to take of their own needs? Even better, these showers and tubs are made so anyone can walk into them without a climb. Can you imagine how independent your loved ones would feel knowing they are safer in the bathroom and are able to take of their own needs?


  
PAY ATTENTION TO THEIR MEDICAL AND PHYSICAL NEEDS

Don’t rely on your parents to remember to take their medications if they need them. Set up a system to ensure they are taking their prescribed medications. Did you know there are “smart” pill bottles on the market? They have 3G capabilities and sensors that can track humidity levels within the bottle to “sense” how many pills or fluid ounces are left inside. Amazing! That data is then sent into the cloud and can remind people via a telephone call or text.

Focus on maintenance for healthy seniors and encourage them to be active. People are living longer than ever and can live long, healthy lives and stay physically fit. Be the motivator and inspiration. Encourage them to take a walk after dinner or enroll them in your local YMCA. They often have classes geared towards seniors and they can make friends while they’re working out.

IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PEOPLE WE LOVE

Everyone desires to age gracefully and independently. Today’s seniors have many resources that allow them the freedom to live healthy, happy and independent lives while giving their caregivers peace of mind.

I hope you found the information in this article useful. Until the next time….

 Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and my brother, Alan, who heads up Tub King, will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.
Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and  SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville, Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. To contact Tub King directly, call (800)843-4231 or email alan@tubking.com. 

The ABC’s of Bathroom Redos

by Alan Knight

Do you dream of having a luxurious master bathroom where you can escape the daily hustle and

Image courtesy of TubKing.com

bustle to relax in your own private spa? Do you dream of a sanctuary, a quiet, pristine place where you perform your daily ablutions? Is your dream bathroom reminiscent of a grand hotel or does it have the aesthetic of a zen-like space? Does all this dreaming make you consider  some little changes to your bathroom or are you thinking of giving it a complete overhaul? Keep in mind, there is practicality in improving a master bathroom in your home. The bathroom is one of the most important rooms in your home, especially when it comes to resale value. An average bathroom remodel can yield a 75% return on the investment and make it more appealing to buyers. So let’s look at the ABC’s of remodeling.


A= APPEAL – AS IN “EYE-APPEAL”
When it comes to a redesign of your bathroom, this is your chance to express your personality through the bath’s design, colors, fixtures, and lighting. What are your priorities? Are you looking for more luxury, better lighting, or to update an 80’s looking bathroom? Do you want your tub or shower to be the focal point or do you prefer to put more emphasis on the vanity area?  Consider installing grab bars in your bathroom to prevent unnecessary accidents. If your plan is to sell your home, research the improvements that will “show” well by making your home stand out from the rest. New counter tops and flooring are visible improvements that will be noticed. A show-stopping tub can be all you need to make a big splash. A walk-in shower is a stand out addition with many safety features and will be a blessing to have in your elder years. Are you seeking a modern look or something more whimsical? You can find many great ideas by looking through design magazines, visiting home centers or showrooms and of course, doing your research on the internet.

THE “B” WORD – PLANNING YOUR BUDGET
Planning your budget is the most important factor when planning a remodel. The two factors to consider are materials and labor. Labor can account for approximately a third of the total remodel. The budget will guide your decision-making process and give you an idea of how much a makeover you will be able to afford. Don’t forget to leave a cushion, because you want to account for those little surprises that may be lurking behind the walls. Unexpected plumbing issues can be costly and require more time and money than originally planned. Remember that a luxurious master bathroom will increase the value of your home. If you are planning on selling in less than five years, then consider the remodel as an investment. If you plan on staying in your home, then the remodel is an investment in your comfort and serenity that you’ll be able to enjoy for years to come.

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COUNTING UP THE COMPONENTS
As you know, while the whole is equal to the sum of its parts, it’s also helpful to lessen the daunting task of putting it all together by looking at the bathroom as separate sections:  The bath and shower, the vanity area and the toilet, the floor. Think about where changes are most needed and start in that zone. If you’re doing a complete remodel, keep a notebook in order to stay consistent with the style as you progress.  But still remember to keep the big picture in mind. While you’re trying to make your bathroom your sanctuary, you must also keep in mind the functionality and practical considerations when doing your remodel. Space and layout will guide your decisions. When making major purchases, it’s important that you look for products that have features that are low-maintenance, lasting and safe.

DECISIONS, DECISIONS
Image courtesy of TubKing.com
Deciding whether you want a bathtub, shower, or a combination of both will be guided by your personal preference, space and budget. This is the area where you may want to splurge a bit because this is where a spa-like environment can be created. Actually, you can create not only a spa-like environment but an actual spa. The possibilities are endless starting with steam showers, walk-in zero threshold showers or a whirlpool tub. Don’t forget that safety is a major consideration when remodeling.   This is particularly important when purchasing a tub or shower. You may not be thinking about it when you are in your 30’s and 40’s, but if this is the home you will live in when you retire, then built-in safety features should be a must. Keep in mind you can have still a spa-like environment and be safe at the same time.

A zero threshold shower allows you the ability to walk into a tub or shower without having to climb. Safety showers and walk-in tubs come with many features to give you best of both worlds: Safety and luxury.  If you want to add a whirlpool to your tub, many walk-in tubs come with these features built-in.   Best of all, adding these elements to your master bath will also add value to your home.

THE ESSENTIALS
You probably think this blog is only about the bathtub and shower. Well, it’s also about the vanity area too. Countertops and counter space are significant in the bathroom’s design and this is where you can make another statement. Since the space is relatively small (as compared to a kitchen for example), you can spend a bit more on higher quality materials to give you that luxury feel. Natural stone counters on your vanity are not only durable and easy to clean, but also add to the luxury you seek. Some of the most popular choices are marble, granite, limestone and soapstone. To give a more spacious feel, a vanity that looks like a piece of furniture can also include storage that helps avoid clutter. Are you seeing the possibilities yet?

A FRESH START FOR THE FLUSH
Is your toilet making your bathroom look a bit outdated? There are new models that provide comfort and efficiency and that fit the aesthetics of your newly remodeled bathroom. These include one and two piece models designed with your family in mind.  A one piece toilet has the bowl and tank in one piece. It saves space and is more aesthetically pleasing. A two piece is more universally used. The bowl and the tank are separate, making it easier to maintain and afford.

GOT IT?

Remodeling your bathroom can be a major endeavor and it really makes sense to break the project down into components. Focusing on your budget, style choices, space and personal preferences are the keys to ensuring that you get the luxury you crave at prices you can afford.

 Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and my brother, Alan, who heads up Tub King, will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.
Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and  SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville, Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, they are also award winners, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. To contact Tub King directly, call (800)843-4231 or email alan@tubking.com. 
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