Viewing 17 posts - 1 through 17 (of 17 total)
  • #74454
    Shower Seat Debacle

    I blogged http://amgroves.blog.co.uk/

    Around nine years ago I went through the tedious and laborious assessment [physical and financial] of having my bathroom changed into a wet room as I was having increasing difficulty stepping up into my shower. After a few false starts, and never seeing the same consultant from the local Council more than once, under my local Council’s watchful guidance of their “Safe At Home’ department a schedule of works was produced, tender were sort and they decided who would do the job, I then sort assistance with the funding in the shape of mortgaged grants and added from my own pot and the work was done. Poorly, and with issues, but done.

    Now my mobility and more importantly stability has deteriorated further. Initially the purchase of a shower stool solved the primary problem and I could successfully shower myself, but a problem arose and grew and grew. Namely the super-dooped non-slip bobbly flooring … if my feet or the floor are slightly damp, I slip, and slipping just a few centimetres has the same result, me on floor going “Owww, ouchy ouch ouch

    So during my annual Occupational Health review telephone call I took the bull by the horns and said “I need something on wheels so I can wheel myself in and out of the bathroom, thus remove the need to stand and thus preventing slippage until I and the floor and not just bone dry but positively arid”. Mr OT said he’d look at what equipment was available and come visit and assess.

    Said Mr OT arrived with four pages photocopied out of the equipment catalogue that they ‘have to’ purchase from. Most of the chairs were made too wide for a standard sized bathroom door :roll: . Mr OT started to go down the route of ‘We can widen the door and do ….”, I think he was somewhat taken aback at the adamant and volume of my “NO!” We sat looking at the one chair trying to figure if it would be workable, the arms were detachable, good, the seat was sort of nearly 22 inches high, good, it has wheels, good, but it might not squeeze through the standard sized bathroom door, not so good. At his insistence one was ordered an he duly delivered it two weeks later.

    I took one look, before the plastic was removed and already knew it would not fit my purpose because it would barely fit through the door and the seat being slightly bucketed would not be low enough for my feet to propel me along. However he left it, told me to give it a go. I couldn’t get the breaks off. I sat in it and couldn’t get out of it. It was £350 of uselessness.

    You see, I wanted something where the frame and wheels were under the chair, but this is designed to do the jobs of several needs, it can be wheeled by a third person, so seated persons feet need to be off the floor , the arm are designed to be removed, but the housing for the arms is not, and further more the housing is welded to the side of the frame, which is larger than the chair. In order to do a sideways transfer from bucketed seat to bed I need to slide my tender bits over the lip of the chair, miss the frame, miss the arm housing and onto the bed, a distance of a few inches. As the picture below shows.

    So I telephoned Mr OT and said it was not going to forfill the purpose, as in I wheel myself independently to and from the shower, do a side slide transfer and everything be tickerty-bo and flowery fresh . He gave me a telephone number for the people who need to come collect it so it can go into stock ready to try with somebody else. I have called them three times a day for the past 7 working days, only ever getting an answer phone and guess what ……… no one has called me back. Plus I think I have found the solution myself, for about £160, and I can claim back the VAT, but I need to ponder and consider whether the height is right and whether the width will fit.

    It is indicative of services today, they can only offer what is available in the catalogue decided upon by a third party, they cannot buy something off-catalogue, they cannot change, engineer or manipulate any of the equipment [like remove the arm housing]. My Mr OT feels most unsatisfied, because he cannot solve problems when 15 years ago he’d have just took the chair into the workshop, cut off the housing, reconfigured the frame and I would have been a happy showering singing shiny bunny.

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85898
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Just typical – our whole independence ruined by a poxy catalogue of allowed item! My OT type person trying to get me a bed said she had a client who found a piece of equipment just a bit too high – and went without because unlike the old days they couldn’t just hack an inch or two of the legs!

    I love stories from abroad in counties like the remotes of India or Africa where villages can’t get disability equipment and they improvise stuff in workshops or recycle to make do – none of this purchasing catalogue rubbish – if a bit needs hacking of the side they just get a saw! Wish it was like that here in a way… the innovation is just amazing in those places.

    Sometimes – the equipment just seems so rubbish in the design – like expecting everyone has the larger door sizes when we just don’t! Who makes this stuff – It’s not like we are all obese and can’t fit a normal door. I had a shower chair that was about 3 inches wider than my bum when I was at Uni! Nothing came any narrower and we only just scraped through a door.

    criptic
    Participant
    Posts: 307
    Joined: 15/03/2011
    #85899
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Sadly, your experience doesn’t surprise me. A few years ago I was assessed as needing a new shower chair by my OT as the one I had was falling apart. So, the OT ordered the same make and model as before because we knew it did the job – I could get my feet underneath instead of out in front on the foot tray.

    It was delivered, I took one look and just sighed. The foot tray was further forward than before and after going back to the company it would seem that the specification had changed and it wasn’t made the same as before. The problem was that there was nothing else suitable that we could see that would allow me to sit on it the way I needed to in order to balance. The solution in the end was to call on the services of a volunteer retired engineer who removed the tray and came up with a makeshift version out of marine plywood. Not ideal but it did mean I could have a shower. I think we were allowed to do that because I had proved such a difficult client to accommodate (story of my life) and it had already been ordered and paid for. I am not sure how my OT swung it although we had to find someone to do it for nothing with limited materials in his shed rather than an actual paid engineer with all the gear to do a proper job.

    It’s a bit bonkers they will not alter equipment – what about your health and safety?? When it comes to complex cases the local bods need to be prepared to think outside of the box!

    Hope you manage to find something that works. I have everything crossed that it doesn’t take too long.

    A learning experience is one of those things that say, “You know that thing you just did? Don’t do that.” - Douglas Adams

    sar78 sar78
    Moderator
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    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85900
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Oh don’t get me started on OTs!!! Thinking outside the box just isn’t in the job description!!
    I got a private OT to advise me when I moved to my bungalow from the flat I’d been in before – won’t be doing that again!!

    Ailsa
    Participant
    Posts: 17
    Joined: 09/12/2011
    #85901
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Sadly OT’s jobs have become, make the environment suit the equipment and not the other way around.

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85902
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Still waiting for the blessed thing to be collected … cannot get on and sort out the other chair until the loaned one is returned.

    They visit my area three times a week but as yet not my street :roll:

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85903
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    FINALLY!!! This morning [and a Saturday morning no less] they have collected the unwanted shower chair.

    So tomorrow morning, well more like after “I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue” on Radio 4 I will be a waddlin my buttocks to the shower for a good old .

    Need a man and a tape measure [keep it clean readers :oops: ] to measure the door space before I finalise the fesibility study on the alternative, don’t want to hand over £££ to find it ain’t gonna ‘fit’.

    :D

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85904
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    @amgmod wrote:

    FINALLY!!! This morning [and a Saturday morning no less] they have collected the unwanted shower chair.
    So tomorrow morning, well more like after “I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue” on Radio 4 I will be a waddlin my buttocks to the shower for a good old
    Need a man and a tape measure [keep it clean readers :oops: ] to measure the door space before I finalise the fesibility study on the alternative, don’t want to hand over £££ to find it ain’t gonna ‘fit’.
    :D

    Excellent news indeed.

    Nice relaxing showers restored!

    Do not hand over the £££’s. My shower man asked me to pay him and he would pop back the
    next week to do the finishing and “make good”. Three months later I an still waiting.

    But to have the shower working was the main thing ! Cannot ever bother to be angry with him.

    "Even if you are not paranoid, it does not mean they are not out to get you!".

    taungfox
    Participant
    Posts: 4,630
    Joined: 27/09/2010
    #85905
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    I chickened out of the shower o the grounds of elf n safety [no elf to pick me up should I slip], went for my usual bird bath top and tail damp sponge jobbie .. nowhere near as satisfying.

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85906
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    I am …..

    Going to …..

    Go stark staring ……

    BONKERS!!! [who said no change there then :twisted: ]

    Man who could be bribed measured my bathroom door width for wheeling something through ….. 56 cms …. NOTHING FITS!!!

    Feeling a bit

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85907
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Oh no! This is not a welcome development. I was only wondering about your shower chair debacle yesterday. :(

    A learning experience is one of those things that say, “You know that thing you just did? Don’t do that.” - Douglas Adams

    sar78 sar78
    Moderator
    Posts: 2,246
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85908
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Would this be any good, I use this make. They come in 17″ (43cm), 19″ (48cm) and 21″ (53cm) width

    Shower chairs

    Vicki
    Participant
    Posts: 1,015
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85909
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    OMG OMG OMG :shock: :o :D

    Vicki .. I could … I could just .. I am gonna …..

    I am sure they can manufacture something for me that will be narrow enough to get through the door, especially as I do not want need crave or desire any arm rests.

    Too much gushig?? Naaaa ..

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85910
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Brilliant :) again proving the power of this forum!! Good work Vix! Good Luck AMG!

    A learning experience is one of those things that say, “You know that thing you just did? Don’t do that.” - Douglas Adams

    sar78 sar78
    Moderator
    Posts: 2,246
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85911
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Glad I could help :D :oops:

    Vicki
    Participant
    Posts: 1,015
    Joined: 05/03/2015
    #85912
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    Hi AMG

    I would say Unf***in’ believable if I didn’t know any different. A debacle for sure, and one we all share on some level. I have always had a shower seat fixed to the wall. The first of the two had a seat made from cheap plastic that over the course of a few months would start to split. Now I’m sure you can all imagine what the combination of pinching plastic and naked flesh could do to a person. Hairs being plucked at random from my legs, my harris, and other hairy areas. OUCH !. Skin in the same places being nipped at like tiny little ninja ants. I took to putting a towel over the seat and that solved the problem for years. Then I had my bathroom re-fitted by the council and I have a new shower seat with rubber to sit on, which is so much better. However as we know life is never simple and straightforward. The arms on the seat are too low, this means it is harder to balance. I can’t be bothered to complain or ask them to change it, because they never get it right anyway. So now I have a two part shower. I start in my wheelchair facing the seat front on. I wash my feet, lower legs, and my Brad Pitts. I also wash my hair like this. Then I get in the shower and do the rest.

    I have used the kind of seats you have when I did hydrotherapy years ago, and when I go swimming. I don’t like them one little bit. They are dangerous and stupid. One thing I have learned from being disabled is don’t try to shift your weight on to something that moves. Add to that the slippery wetness of the situation, non slip floors that ain’t non slip. Not my idea of a good time. I would recommend you get one that is fixed to the wall, with the arms at the right height. This could just be personal preference. How do you guys weigh up fixed seats against mobile seats ?.

    Whatever happens I hope you can find some sanity in the shower.
    Good work Vikki, and yeah Sarah, the forum does have power.

    Have a Perfect Day

    Karl

    Dovito28 Dovito28
    Participant
    Posts: 171
    Joined: 17/11/2011
    #85913
    Re: Shower Seat Debacle

    The issue for me is the slppery non slip flooring, I dare not try and stand from the seat. Uptil now I have used a shower stool, moved it to the bit where i can stand and got up but my deterioration means that the slightest unpredicted motion causes my foot to slip and while I do not topple, I am in a bent stuck position. I want the chair to be able to roll mself to and from the bathroom to dry non slip carpet.

    I'm always the animal, my body's the cage

    I blog about nothingness www.amgroves.com

    AM
    Participant
    Posts: 4,751
    Joined: 05/03/2015
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