Safer bathroom reduces chance of accident

Did you know that June is National Safety Month? So what does safety month have to do with the interior design of your home? Lots, and particularly in the bathroom where approximately 70 percent of all accidents occur.

According to the National Safety Council, 200,000 accidents occur each year — in the bathroom. Sounds like we should avoid the bathroom at all cost, but alas that is impossible, so instead, let’s see how we can make that room safer.

A textured floor is a good place to start. With all the wetness in the bathroom from the sink to the bathtub/shower, we get lots of splashes on the bathroom floor that can cause slipping.

Slick surfaces in the bathroom floor are attractive but are also the most hazardous. If you must use a shiny floor tile, make them small tiles so you have lots of grout for texture and better traction. Better yet is to avoid the shiny stuff and go for slip-resistant flooring.

Grab bars aren’t only for the elderly or infirmed. They are great to have in the shower of any bathroom. They don’t have to be plain and utilitarian looking as there are choices out there for decorative looking ones, too. Decor Assist and Grab Bars from Delta exceed the load requirements and offer aesthetic finishes.

Any small children in the house? Locks for the cabinets are a good idea and can be purchased at any local hardware store. Any cabinet or drawer that contains medicines, toxic liquids or just about any cleaning supply should be locked if there are small children in the house either all the time or just visiting.

Did you know that most water heaters are preset to 140 degrees? This can burn you, particularly if your skin is sensitive. It is said that you should keep your hot foods to a temperature of 140 degrees until served so as to prevent food-borne illnesses from forming. If that temperature can kill disease, it can certainly damage skin.

Another way to keep the hot water from burning is to install a digital temperature readout shower system. Delta is one company that provides these. The system provides a digital numerical readout of the temperature of the water, and it claims to be able to be installed in minutes.

Rosemary Sadez Friedmann, an interior designer in Naples, Fla., is author of “Mystery of Color.” For design inquiries, write to Rosemary at