As age advances, even a simple task like using the toilet can be a challenge, especially for seniors with mobility issues or who have just had an operation. Things like raised toilet seats can help in improving seniors’ lives. Raised toilet seats are much like regular toilet seats, but with a few inches added to make them taller. This enables older adults to sit and help themselves without having to squat too low. Some of these tools come with handles to enhance safety and comfort. Those that feature arms and legs offer added stability and security. Here is a guide to raised toilet seats for the elderly.
Who should use raised seats?
- Those who should use these tools are seniors:
- With weak muscles.
- With balance issues.
- Who has undergone surgeries
- Who have suffered injuries or accidents
- Who experience fatigue more often.
- Who would love to carry out the Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) on their own.
Elderly persons or their loved ones can always buy these tools on their own, but professional assistance is recommended, especially to those who have gone through a series of falls in the bathroom. one can seek help from physical therapy, a physician, or an occupational therapist. Either of these professionals can help older adults and their families determine if installing raised toilet seats in their bathrooms is the right thing to do. If yes, the professional may recommend if there are specific features they should look out for.
What to Consider When Buying Raised Toilet Seats?
When choosing the right raised toilet seat for a senior loved one, it is important to know the needs of the user. Do they suffer from any kind of disease that’s making them sick, like arthritis? When the reasons for buying these life-saving tools are determined, choosing the right tool becomes easier. The goals help older adults, and their families determine the kind of features they need. These are the major factors to put into consideration:
The Design of the Raised Toilet Seat
The design matters a lot. Some tools come with handles, and others are made without. Some seats feature adjustable legs, and others don’t. So, knowing whether the user would need some extra features, like handles or arms for support help a lot.
The Weight Capacity of the Raised Toilet Seat
It is important to know the weight of the use, and whether the tool they are opting for can withstand it. Some tools can withstand from 200 to 300 pounds. If your older loved one is overweight, you can opt for a bariatric raised toilet seat. Bariatric raised toilet seats can withstand up to 500 pounds.
The Height of the Raised Toilet Seat
Regular raised toilet seats typically measure between 4 and 6 inches high, but seniors who need more raised toilet seats may consider other options in the market. It is important to consult a healthcare professional if one’s need for a raised toilet seat is more than usual.
The Portability of the Raised Toilet Seat
Many raised toilet seats are heavy, and seniors may not be able to move with them from one place to another. Some seats are made with plastic cushions to help seniors who may need to travel with them. However, using them in public can be a challenge. But if one has to use them in public, they should seek family restrooms, as they are large enough and are mostly accessible.
Older adults looking for more support should consider buying raised toilet seats with additional features. Features to check to include:
- Support arms: Support arms give more support and enhance safety when sitting on the toilet and getting after helping themselves.
- Additional padding: Some raised toilet seats are made with cushioned plastics to offer more padding. Tools with these features should be checked from time to time, as they wear out after a while.
- Hinged raised toilet seats: These are foldable seats. Most of the seats with adjustable legs come with hinges to allow older adults or their loved ones to fold them up when not in use.
The Size and Shape of the Tool
When buying these raised toilet seats, seniors should ensure that the shape aligns with the toilet bowl. Some raised toilet seats are oval-shaped, while others are round, and one should choose, depending on the shape of their toilet bowls.
The Cost of Raised Toilet Seats for the Elderly
The prices of raised toilet seats vary, depending on the type and the feature they possess. Models with arms and handles tend to be more expensive, with some costing twice the price of standard toilet seats.
- The cost of a regular raised toilet seat: is $20
- The cost of tools with more features: $100
Where to Buy Raised Toilet Seats
Many online retailers are selling these tools. But if a physician recommends a specific type of raised toilet seat, there is a chance there are some in their facilities. If not, they can always write a prescription describing the exact raised toilet seat that older adults can purchase from a store. Another option for acquiring these tools is leasing from the nearest medical loan closet.
Paying for Raised Toilet Seats
Medicare doesn’t covet these tools because they don’t meet the description of Durable Medical Equipment (DME). It is also very unlikely for these tools to be covered by private insurance companies because there are accessibility modifications for bathrooms and not medical tools.
Best Raised Toilet Seats for Seniors
- Toilet Seat Riser with Arms For Elongated Style by Essential Medical Supply Inc.: This raised toilet seat with padded, removable arms adds more safety, security, and comfort when sitting and getting off the seat. Read more at https://www.essentialmedicalsupply.com/toilet-seat-riser-with-arms-elongated.
- CAREX Classics Raised Toilet Seat with Armrests: These seats are designed for seniors experiencing challenges bending or sitting down comfortably. The seat comes with an additional four and a half inches. They feature locks and padded armrests to enhance the safety and stability of the user. Find more details at https://carex.com/products/carex-classics-raised-toilet-seat-with-armrests.
- ETAC My-Loo Fixed Toilet Seat with Arm Supports: This is a perfect option for seniors with mobility or balance issues to visit the toilet safely since they provide more support and enhance independence among users. Read more at https://novis.com.au/products/etac-my-loo-fixed?variant=39456540459068#description. Seniors can buy Etac My-Loo Supporting Legs to add stability when using these raised toilet seats. These legs come with a foldability feature and increase the weight capacity to 200kg. ETAC My-Loo Fixed Toilet Seat with Arm Supports without these legs can withstand only up to 150 kg.