skip navigation

Transitions in Aging

Aging in Place

Scenario #3: Robert

Photo of a man smiling

  • Age: 48
  • Type of developmental disability: Down Syndrome
  • Type of residence: Independent home with parents
  • Difficulty with: Bathroom

NEXT: Scenario #4: Lucy

Notes and References

Robert is 48 years old, has Down syndrome, and participates in an adult day program in Byrn Mawr, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, for individuals with developmental disabilities.

The program is five days a week from 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM and Robert is typically driven to the program by his parents or a driving service. On weekends and after 3:00 PM on weekdays Robert does not usually leave his parent's home.

Robert really enjoys the day program and is very sociable within the program. He needs some assistance with tasks during the day program but overall he is very independent.

Robert's parents have a bedroom and bathroom at their house that are not attached to the main house so Robert has some privacy. Robert has recently experienced some vision issues. To help Robert remain independent, some changes he and his family have considered are: (1) placing a nonslip mat or strips in the shower or bathtub to prevent slipping, (2) putting grab bars in the bathtub and next to the toilet to grab to maintain balance, (3) putting a toilet seat riser on so it is easier to sit, (4) having a shower seat and hand-held or adjustable shower head to take a shower independently, (5) having night lights in the bathroom to see at night, and (6) setting water heater to a lower temperature to avoid getting burned.