If it is becoming harder to get around and do things at home, make life easier. Changes to your home, big or small, can make you safer and more independent. Find out how.

Make having a wash easier with simple changes

You might find it tiring standing in the shower or could be worried that will slip. If so, make having a wash easier.

You could sit with a shower seat and hand-held shower head. And keep steady with an anti-slip mat and grab rails – though be careful with suction ones.

Make having a wash easier by:

Make getting around at home easier with handrails and other changes

If getting up and downstairs is difficult, steady yourself with handrails on both sides of the stairs. Ask us to put in standard ones or choose and buy some yourself.

You can also get advice like where to best put them first. Join a waiting list for our advice, or pay for independent advice.

Also, make sure it is easy to move around and remove trip hazards.

You can:

Get in and out of chairs and bed more easily

If you have difficulty getting in and out of chairs or your bed, you can change this.

You can make armchairs and sofas higher and easier to get up from with 'raisers'. Bed raisers can be fitted to many types of beds to increase the height and help you get in and out.

You can also think about whether other bed aids and chairs that can rise and recline could help you.

Find out more about making it easier to use furniture by:

Make going upstairs simple with a stairlift

If using stairs is difficult even with an extra handrail, you might need a stairlift or house lift.

Get expert advice on stairlifts from our council service Dorset Accessible Homes. They will help you to apply for the financial help you might qualify for.

If you do not qualify, you can put one in yourself. Or ask the service to, for a fee.

If your situation is complex, ask our occupational therapists to look at your home and how you get around. There is a wait for this. We can also help you apply for financial help.

Find out more about getting a stairlift by:

Make having a wash easier with a walk-in shower/wet room

You might have grab rails or a bathing aid but still be finding it hard to get in and out of the bath. If so, make washing easier in a wet room. 

Get expert advice on wet rooms from our council service Dorset Accessible Homes. They will help you to apply for the financial help you might qualify for.

They can advise you even if you do not qualify and can oversee work for you for a fee. 

If you find it difficult using the bath or shower:

  • ask Dorset Accessible Homes how they can help you get a wet room on 0333 003 0010
  • get free advice on wet rooms from independent living charity (DLF) Disabled living foundation on 0300 123 3084
  • buy one from a local supplier (there are many options to consider, including Bathroom Inspirations, Impey, J&Bs) and find a local firm to put the wet room in 
  • ask for an appointment with a Dorset Council specialist to look at your needs in your home on 01305 221016 or contact us online
  • or, if you want the choice and can fund changes yourself, see a private occupational therapist for advice:

Getting bigger changes to stay in your home

If a disability or old age means doing things at home is hard, you might need bigger changes. Doors can be widened, worktops and switches lowered, and ramps put in for you.

You can use this website to get a self-guided assessment on what type of common adaptations may benefit you. It will also give you an indicative assessment on eligibility for a grant if you answer financial information accurately.

If you complete a self-assessment and wish to progress with a Disabled Facilities Grant please save your form and include it in your referral.

You can also get expert advice on making major changes from our council service Dorset Accessible Homes. They will help you to apply for the financial help you might qualify for.

Also, think about moving to a home that already meets your needs.

You can: