How Can I Make My Elderly Toilet Higher?

Certified Senior Advisor®
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Make Elderly Toilet Higher

Options for making your elderly toilet higher include installing a new taller toilet, a raised toilet seat, and toilet risers. Fortunately, there is an option for every budget too.

Make Elderly Toilet Higher
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In order to safely use the toilet, it is important to make sure it is the right height for the elderly. If you find your toilet seat is too low, here are some ways to make it higher.

The ideal height (according to the Americans with Disabilities Act) is between 17 and 19 inches from the floor (the standard toilet is usually 15 to16 inches in height), including the seat. This height will make it easier to both sit and rise from the toilet.

So what options are there to ensure that the senior has access to a toilet that is the perfect height that ensures comfort and safety?

Options For A Higher Toilet

One option is installing a tall toilet for elderly seniors who need a bit of help getting up and down while using the toilet. Taller toilets are designed to be taller and safer for the elderly, especially if you choose a toilet that is set at the best height to help your loved one. However, it can be expensive to replace an entire toilet.

Luckily, there are other options available that will ensure that the elderly enjoy a comfortable and safe toilet experience – among these being the raised toilet seat.

These seats can be of invaluable help to those who suffer from an impaired sense of balance or lower muscle strength, especially in the legs. These are both conditions that affect the majority of seniors.

Make Elderly Toilet Higher seat riser
Toilet seat risers do not require extensive plumbing to be installed.

Toilet Seat Risers

Toilet seat risers are also tremendously easy to install – and do not require the extensive plumbing work that would be the case with alternative toilets such as the in-wall toilets used by many seniors.

The toilet seat riser is fitted over the existing toilet bowl, and the toilet seat sits on top of the riser. This sort of riser can raise the toilet seat by several inches.

However, there is a downside. These sorts of risers have a reputation for shifting during the toilet experience. That shift is not only startling but can also cause the person using the toilet to unbalance, leading to injury.

If you do decide on a toilet seat riser, make sure to choose one that fits your type of toilet safely and securely.

RELATED: Comfort Height vs. Chair Height Toilets

Raised Toilet Seats

Raised toilet seats also come in versions where the toilet seat is an integral part of the assembly. These are considerably more stable.

The addition of support arms that allow the toilet user to brace themselves and get better balance makes these toilet seat risers extremely popular.

Other Options

There are also a number of options for the raised seat for seniors.

There are versions that feature an elongated bowl and bariatric versions that cater to larger people (many can accommodate up to 1,200 pounds).

There are also those with contoured seats that can make the toilet experience that much more comfortable.

Summary

Safety and comfort are important contributing factors to a senior enjoying a good quality of life.

A raised toilet seat is a viable and cost-effective way to ensure that the toilet experience is not intimidating, does not cause pain, and contributes to a stress-free environment for seniors.

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Scott Grant, CSA®, ATP

Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®
Assistive Technology Professional
Certified Rehab Technology Supplier (CRTS®)

I have been serving seniors and the elderly for over 20 years as a medical equipment and custom wheelchair specialist for a regional medical equipment company. I am also a lucky dad to four awesome daughters and grandfather to three pretty terrific grandkids. When not helping older adult improve the quality of their lives, I enjoy early morning runs and occasional kayak trips. I am also a self-admitted nerd who loves anything from the 1980's. Learn More

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