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The best bathroom in the world..?

'The best bathroom in the world' is not in some grand mansion, but is the smallest room in the house in a traditional suburban home in the heart of Flintshire...

James Randall

It belongs to retired watchmaker James Randall, who suffers from Inclusion-Body Myositis, a rare and incurable musclewasting disease. "You couldn't swing a cat in it, but to me it's the best bathroom in the world. It is brilliant!" says Mr Randall. His enthusiasm is a result of the equipment now installed – a Closomat automatic bidet toilet, Aerolet vertical lift and ApreShower body dryer – which enable him to maintain personal hygiene and cleanliness without help.

The Closomat, a conventional WC with additional integral douching and drying, was first installed seven years ago and has been in use ever since, by both Mr and Mrs Randall. Mrs Randall has always acted as carer for her husband since his diagnosis 12 years ago, but when she suffered a stroke and had to go into a home, Mr Randall's Occupational Therapist re-assessed him and arranged the installation of the Aerolet lifter and ApreShower.

"People talk about independence, but it's much more than that. It's about pride, self confidence, dignity and privacy. The equipment is very efficient and so easy to use. It has turned my life around, I couldn't cope without it," says Mr Randall.

The Closomat was the first automatic bidet toilet for the disabled. No bigger than, and looking like, a conventional toilet, it includes a douche and drier which gently cleanse the user after toileting without the need for manual wiping. One single press of the flush pad by hand or body triggers the flushing, douching and drying process. The Closomat warms the douching water as required to body temperature, and dries after washing with a gentle flow of warm air.

The Aerolet vertical lift is fixed to the Closomat toilet so remains secure during operation. In use, it replicates the natural motion of standing up and sitting down, gently raising and lowering the user to position them accurately over the toilet as required whilst enabling their feet to remain in contact with the floor and maintaining the centre of gravity above the feet for balance. It ensures the user remains fully supported and in control whilst toileting. Mr Randall's unit is specifically designed for use with the Closomat and includes a special seal underneath the seat to optimise drying. Closomat's manufacturer Total Hygiene supplies 11 variations of Aerolet lifters for toilet and shower, to enable anyone with mobility or balance issues to use the bathroom as independently as possible.

The wall-mounted Apréshower gently blows warm air at an average 70°F (20°C) to dry the whole body thoroughly without any rubbing. Total Hygiene maintains that when installed in an enclosed space, the Apréshower's running costs are comparable with laundering towels. The unit can be mounted in any corner within a bathing or shower area. Only 260mm deep, it occupies minimal space and simply requires a suitable electrical connection point.

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