Admitting you need a little help in the bathroom can be difficult. It’s one thing to talk about installing a few grab rails. It’s another to start thinking about using a special chair for toileting and showering. However, a shower chair may be your safest option for transferring and bathing. And there are lots of reasons why you may benefit from one.
Why should you use a shower chair?
Shower chairs (especially those that roll from toilet to shower) are sometimes seen as something that only wheelchair users need. While they are a vital part of many wheelchair user’s supply of adaptive equipment, you don’t have to have mobility limitations to need one.
Here are some other reasons you might want to use a shower chair:
- You are recovering from surgery.
- You have POTS or faint easily.
- You have some limitations to your mobility.
- You like sitting down while showering.
- You are a fall risk from medications.
- You have difficulty balancing.
The list could go on. But what it boils down to is your comfort and safety. If you feel more stable and comfortable in the shower when using a chair, then don’t put limitations on why you could justify getting one.
What kind of shower chair should you buy?
There are all kinds of shower chairs, and they have a wide range in function and price. You can find anything from a simple bench to a waterproof wheelchair.
Bench options are usually the most basic, and also the most economical. They function simply as a seat. Typically they are made of plastic and have holes for water drainage. Benches are usually lightweight, easy to move, and cost around $40.
A step up from a bench is a chair (or a bench with a back). These pieces of equipment are very similar to simple benches, but have extra features. Usually, a chair will have a back, some kind of handles or armrests to help you transfer, and they are a bit more sturdy. Depending on how many extra features they have, they can range from right above the $40 mark to a few hundred dollars. And the terminology used for what you might consider a “chair,” and “benches with backs” seems to be interchangeable- so make sure you search for both.
The most supportive option is a shower wheelchair. These chairs can usually roll from toilet to shower, and they have an opening in the bottom. Most of them also have to be propelled by an attendant, but it is possible to find a few that have wheels you can self-propel.
The Combi Shower Chair
ILA carries the mobile Combi commode/shower chair. It is one of the wheelchair-type shower chairs. The Combi allows the user to sit down safely and comfortably during toileting or showering. It has toilet rails and can be used either freestanding, with an optional bucket, or it can be positioned over a toilet. The best part is how easy it is to move and maneuver in different settings. And the stainless steel materials are easy to clean.
The Combi is on sale this week. But if it doesn’t fit what you are looking for, you can check out the full range of our bathing and bath accessories here!