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Installing permanent grab bars in a shower or tub enclosure takes some planning and hard work, but they’re much more reliable than suction-based devices. These safety devices aren’t just for older adults because everyone benefits from them, such as if the hot water or water pressure causes dizziness or when needing to be extra careful following an injury or surgery. It’s best to install three to four grab bars in the following locations for safety, or at least as many as possible in the available space.
For free-standing shower stalls with doors, start with a vertical grab bar located right next to the jamb. This allows the shower user to keep one hand on the bar while opening and shutting the shower door. This bar can be relatively short of just 12 to 18 inches, but make sure it’s the correct height for an easy and natural grasp by installing it at about the same height as the door handle.