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Help Seniors Maintain Their Independence at Home

There's something almost magical about starting the day with a warm soothing soak in the tub. A nice bath not only allows us to feel and be at our best, it gives us the strength and confidence to get the most out of each and every day.

And as we get older, a rejuvenating bath can be just what we need to restore self-esteem and independence, giving us comfort and the quality of life every one of us is entitled to and deserves.

Peggy Archibald, 73, an active senior from Ladner, B.C. credits her morning ritual with getting each day off to a good start. "I love to golf, dance and enjoy dinners out with my friends," she says. "People would always ask me: 'Where do you get your energy?' Same way I always have, I'd tell them. I start each day with a nice relaxing bath."

October 2001 brought something that Peggy wasn't prepared for. "My son Ron had been making noise about moving me out of my house. Boy did I ever give him an earful about that," she laughs. Ron worried, as many of us with elderly parents do, that if his mother stayed alone in her home, something bad might happen to her. "I was touched by his concern. But to leave my home . . . I just couldn't imagine doing that. So many memories . . . so much of who I am is in my house," she says.

The morning of October 17 started like any other day. Peggy made herself a strong pot of coffee and let it percolate while she read her newspaper and enjoyed a nice bath. "When I tried to lift my legs to exit I couldn't get out of the side of the bath! I tried and tried but my strength and agility just weren't there anymore. It was as though they had suddenly vanished," she says.

Lucky for Peggy, her friend Elsie was scheduled to drop round later that day. "When I didn't answer the door, Elsie got worried. She called Ron right away and he got in with his key. By the time they got to me I had been stranded in the tub for almost five hours." "That was the scariest moment of my life," Ron recalls. "I found Mom and she was curled up and shaking . . . she looked terrified," Ron recalls. "It was such an awful thing to see someone you love so much looking so scared." It was a wrenching experience for both mother and son. "I'm not sure what was more traumatizing -- being alone in the bath all that time or seeing the look on my dear sweet son's face when he found me there."

"I gave Mom an ultimatum right then and there," he says. "Either leave your house and get full-time care or we're going to have to make some major changes to make things easier for you." Peggy refused to leave, so Ron got busy making changes.

First on the list was to order his mother a specially-designed bathtub he had seen in a catalogue from Premier Bathrooms. Easy Bathe is a walk-in bath with a side-opening door that makes getting in and out easy. The water is temperature-controlled for complete safety, and once closed the door seals tightly, giving you peace of mind that it will not leak. As well as the standard seat, there is a range of height extensions to suit the user's personal requirements. Its high sides allow users to enjoy a truly relaxing soak in complete peace.

Easy Bathe is one of four walk-in tubs the company offers. "Our mission is to ensure that our clients can bathe in total comfort and our service guarantees discretion and privacy are kept," says Richard Barnes of Premier Bathroom.

Courtesy of ARA Content

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