Bathtub Deaths Do Occur. Here’s What You Should Know
Accidental bathtub deaths are a major concern in countries like Japan.
Accidental bathtub deaths are a major concern in countries like Japan. (Photo: iStockphoto)

Bathtub Deaths Do Occur. Here’s What You Should Know

According to the autopsy report conducted on Sridevi, the actor passed away due to accidental drowning in a bathtub at her hotel apartment in Dubai.

Shocking as this revelation was for her fans, bathtub deaths are not as uncommon. From The Door’s front man Jim Morrison, to soul diva Whitney Houston and then tragically her daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown, many celebrities have died in their bathtubs.

In most celebrity deaths, the cause was linked to substance and alcohol abuse.

Are Bathtubs Dangerous?

There are studies done both in the US and Japan, that point to heightened risk of accidental deaths in a bathtub.

According to a Telegraph report, Japan's health ministry had launched an investigation in 2012 after it was estimated that 14,000 people died every year in the tub. The number was three times as many as those who died in car accidents.

The deaths were attributed to drowning, heart palpitations, heart attacks and head injuries. The deaths increased in winter months when older people moved from warmer parts of their house to the bathroom, often going into thermal shock.

The report also blamed the Japanese culture of taking baths at the end of a hectic day as a form of relaxation.

A report by The Times of India quotes Japan’s Consumer Affairs Agency which said drowning in bathtubs rose 70 percent over the past 10 years with 9 out of 10 victims over the age of 65 years.

Over two lakh people visit hospitals due to bathroom (not bathtub) injuries every year, as per a report in The New York Times. The US Center For Disease Control study found that the the bathroom injury rate for women was 72 percent higher than for men. The authors attributed this to the physiology, lower body strength and bone mass of women.

Doctors advise that we avoid excessive changes in temperatures, soak in gradually and keep ourselves hydrated.
Doctors advise that we avoid excessive changes in temperatures, soak in gradually and keep ourselves hydrated.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Doctors advise that we avoid excessive changes in temperatures, soak in gradually and keep ourselves hydrated.

Here are some other tips we can keep in mind:

  • Put nonslip strips, mats or tiles in your tub and shower to help prevent falling. Secure any loose corners on the mats.
  • Place grab bars around the bathtub, toilets and shower areas.
  • Make sure the floor area outside the tub and the shower is dry.

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