Children's supportive toilet seats

Children's supportive toilet seats

Supportive toilet seats comprise a seat unit that usually incorporates a backrest, side support and a lap strap or harness. They either clamp to the toilet bowl or are freestanding.

Toilet-fixed units tend to be less stable than freestanding ones and fixings must be routinely checked to ensure the seat remains secure. Freestanding frames are however, more bulky and awkward to move away.

When considering a supportive toilet seat, it is worth bearing in mind the following:

  • Support seats made of shiny rigid plastic may be uncomfortable and hard to sit on and the skin may stick to it after a few minutes
  • The size and shape of the aperture is critical for comfort. An oval shape is usually preferred
  • The size of the pommel - if too wide it may dig into the inner thighs; rigid plastic pommels can be uncomfortable for a child who has spasticity in their legs causing them to 'scissor'
  • Moulded armrests may provide support for the child when he/she is sitting on the toilet, but may hinder assisted or sideways transfers
  • Some models provide foot support which is more stable and comfortable for the child. Also, the best position for bowel evacuation is to have the feet supported, with the knees slightly higher than the hips - i.e. mimicking a squatting position
  • For children who find it difficult to sit up straight, check the level of support provided by the straps and harnesses.
  • They can be inconvenient for other family members.
  • Where will you store the seat when it is not in use?

View the list of supportive toilet seats we have listed on Living made easy for children.

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Advice last checked: 30 January 2018 Next check due: 30 January 2021

All advice is either supported by references (cited in the text) or is based upon peer reviewed professional opinion. Our advice is impartial and not influenced by sponsors or product suppliers listed on the site.
Conflict of interest statement

References

  1. Disabled Living Foundation 2014  Choosing children's daily living equipment
    View reference   Last visited:  13/08/2012 Evidence type: 2
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