Assist rails — also called grab bars — are an important safety feature in many homes. Strategically placed in spots where accidents are common, they can serve as your first line of defense in preventing slip and fall injuries. Whether or not you have elderly or mobility-impaired people living with you, assist rails are a useful addition to any bathroom.
Facts and Figures
In 2011, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a report detailing the scope and significance of nonfatal bathroom injuries in adults over 15. Some key findings:
- Every year in the United States, an estimated 234,094 adults visit the emergency room as a result of an injury sustained in the bathroom.
- An overwhelming number of bathroom accidents, 81%, were the result of a fall. Some of the most common activities leading to injury included bathing, showering or getting out of the tub at 37.3%, slipping and falling at 17.3%, and getting up or sitting down to use the toilet at 14.1%.
- Injuries are most commonly sustained to the head, 31%; lower back or torso, 20%; upper back or torso, 18%; leg or foot, 17%; and arm or hand, 13%. The most frequently reported types of injuries included contusions and abrasions, 29.3%; strains and sprains, 19.6%; and fractures, 17.4%.
- Both the frequency and the severity of injuries increase with age. Adults between the ages of 75 and 84, and 84 and older, suffered injuries at a rate of 64.8 and 190.1 per 100,000, respectively. Also, hospitalization rates were highest for individuals over 85 at 197.4 per 100,000.
Clearly, there is a need for products that reduce the risk of injury in the bathroom. Often, assist rails represent the simplest and most cost-effective way of preventing slips and falls.
Benefits of Assist Rails
Strategically placed assist rails prevent injuries in the bathroom in two ways: by helping individuals steady themselves and providing something to grab onto when they fall or feel faint. Other advantages of assist rails include:
- Their small footprint. Grab bars can be added to practically any bathroom without requiring major renovations or other changes.
- Their unobtrusive nature. If you’ve put time and money into the design of your bathroom, you don’t want anything affecting that. Grab bars are available in a wide range of colors and configurations to blend in seamlessly with your bathroom’s decor.
- Their low cost. Grab bars are a small, inexpensive upgrade that can potentially prevent a serious injury or worse. As a result, they offer excellent value to any home where older or mobility-impaired individuals are present.
Towson Medical Equipment has a large inventory of grab bars, assist rails and other bathroom products available for sale. We can help you choose a product with the right features and weight rating for your needs. We can also provide installation assistance to ensure your purchase is set up in the most effective manner possible.
Check out our inventory online or visit one of our two locations to speak with a representative directly.