Toilets and toilet seats are rarely discussed in our home, unless they break. We tend to leave ours alone and somewhat boring. Although if I wasn't renting, I think I'd be inclined to get this pretty red toilet seat for the country style bathroom decor I like.
Or how about gorgeous pink rose toilet seat accessories – called tattoos! Isn't this one lovely? And I could tease my grandkids that their Sandwich Generation granny nanny got a tattoo! Wouldn't that be a hoot. 🙂
One of the things you learn pretty fast when dealing with surgeries and the recovery process, though, whether your own or a beloved senior citizens, is that often the cute and colorful gets packed away and the utilitarian takes over.
When my senior dad reached the end stage of his parkinsons disease, that wasn't necessary because of how we had preplanned. He actually never needed any adjustment to his toilet. We had ordered a fairly tall toilet with grab bars for each bathroom and he went from those straight to a bedside commode chair, which hospice provided.
The same was true for me when I broke my ankle. Those toilet grab bars were definitely worthy their weight in gold for this Sandwich Generation granny nanny and, indeed, my whole multigenerational family. Even my grandkids have appreciated them.
For the recent total hip replacement surgery and recovery my aging relative had to deal with, it was a little more difficult. She does not have toilet grab bars nor does she have room for them in her bathroom. But she definitely needed something, even before the surgery, as getting up and down on the toilet got progressively harder, due to arthritis hip pain. After much research, I learned some important facts like:
They make great looking raised toilet seats with high handles – but you have to be very careful to push up on BOTH handles – otherwise you can tip it over.
If you have men or boys who live in the household – or visit – you might want to consider a raised toilet seat that attaches, and can be lifted up and down. Some have handles – others don't.
There is also the option of a very simple toilet seat riser – bare bones basic, so to speak, and less expensive as a result.
If you need handles but don't want them attached to the elevated toilet seat, you can buy a toilet safety frame with rails that stands independently.
I noticed the hospital used an independent elevated toilet seat on a stand that was placed over their toilet. It does cost a bit more but it is rated for up to 600 pounds – double most of the other raised toilet seats!
Our favorite? We discovered this Moen Locking toilet seat with support handles attached down low. It attaches to the toilet quickly – even when it was this not-so-mechanically-abled Sandwich Generation granny nanny installing it. The lid can be lifted easily when I am over with my grandboys. It fit well into her small space, has nice cutouts in the seat, and she can use the handles to push up – making sure she pushes on both handles evenly, the same as with the bigger raised toilet seat with safety rails. It pops off to let her clean it simply and pops back on nicely. And she feels comfortable and secure in it – making her a very happy recuperating senior.
They may not be as pretty as the red or pink toilet seats at the top, but these raised toilet seats and safety rails are great resources for the Sandwich Generation, dealing with the multigenerational issues of caring for the elderly parents in our families, along with raising kids, or babysitting grandchildren. What's your favorite choice? Or do you have another to recommend? We'd love to hear.