Mobility is not the only issue for those with an SCI
Life after a spinal cord injury can feel overwhelming. From a logistical perspective, major adjustments are required to your home to enable you to maintain your independence. Members of PBF Australia, who have received a benefit payment, often utilise these funds to make the necessary alterations to their homes.
- Wider doorways both internally and externally
- Lever type door handles so they are easier to open
- Mid-height light switches and power outlets
- Lowered benches in the kitchen
- Manoeuvring space inside the house, especially on each side of the bed
- Bathroom – roll in shower, wheeled shower chair or wall mounted shower seat, grab bars, raised toilet
Alterations to the bathroom can be difficult and a major expense, but are an essential component of making your transition from hospital to home as easy as possible.
In nearly all cases of spinal cord injury, control over your bladder and bowel is affected. This is because the nerves controlling these internal organs are attached to the base of the spinal cord. Messages of being full can no longer be passed from the nerves in the bladder and bowel to the brain, therefore you are unaware of the need to go to the toilet. Functional bathrooms are imperative.
To ensure the bathroom is safe, easy to use and takes into consideration future needs of a person with a spinal cord injury, it is recommended that input from an Occupational Therapist is sought. However once these recommendations have been received, how do non-members of PBF Australia afford to modify their bathrooms? Unfortunately the cost of bathroom adaptations are simply unattainable for many.
PBF Australia helps individuals living with spinal cord injury by providing funds for the purchase of essential equipment or home adaptations that will improve the quality and independence of life. Once all other avenues of financial support have been exhausted, people who have incurred a traumatic spinal cord injury can apply for a grant.
Recently PBF Australia approved a gifting fund application for John Lapworth’s bathroom.
“I was granted an amount of $2,500 from PBF towards necessary bathroom modifications at my new home. As a long-term paraplegic, this was greatly appreciated, as my shoulders have deteriorated markedly in recent years and I have difficulty lifting and transferring. The en-suite bathroom in the house my wife and I recently moved into was totally inadequate, as it had a small square shower cubicle and restricted access to the toilet. I was showering in the main bathroom while sitting on a shower chair in the middle of the floor, as there was only a bath with an overhead shower there.
The renovations to the en-suite bathroom, made possible with the grant, have transformed my ability to use it…….we now have an open (wheel-in) shower, with plenty of room to manoeuvre, and all facilities are now accessible from a seated position. It will now meet my needs for as long as we are living there, and hopefully also cover further negative ageing processes.”
To help PBF Australia to continue with these grants please make a tax deductible Donation today.