Being able to access toileting facilities can greatly impact your independence and the quality of your outing, including the amount of time that you are able to stay out for and the kinds of things you are able to participate in.

Yellow sign depicting an accessible toilet

Being able to access toileting facilities can greatly impact your independence and the quality of your outing, including the amount of time that you are able to stay out for and the kinds of things you are able to participate in.

Accessible changing place facilities have full sized change tables and hoists which meet the Australian Standards required for people with limited mobility to access appropriate toileting facilities. An adult change room allows people with disability to get out and about, and enjoy their time knowing that their toiletry and hygiene needs are catered for. More changing places have been built throughout Australia resulting from a concerted three year campaign. 

Iconic locations such as the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) have great changing facilities on offer. Forward thinking attractions have begun to realise the potential of providing accessible facilities, as they attract more visitors, families and friends of people with disability, which in turn allows people with mobility issues to return more frequently and stay for longer periods, improving independence and quality of life for people with disability whilst being good business sense in general. Aiming for a more inclusive and accessible society is good for everyone.

National Public Toilet Map

The National Toilet Map is a benefit to everyone as you set off on your daily travels. The National Public Toilet Map shows the location of more than 14,000 public and private public toilet facilities across Australia.

To view all locations, visit the website: www.toiletmap.gov.au. You can also download the National Toilet Map as an app on your phone and program your preferences and needs such as accessible parking, right hand transfer, or left hand transfer, change table, baby change, sharps disposal, drinkable water and others. You can also make a plan for a specific trip, from your home town to your destination.


Incontinence

Incontinence is no laughing matter and can cause anxiety for anyone who is affected.

The Continence Foundation has free information for people affected by incontinence. They can be called on 1800 330 066. They offer assistance for:

  • Women - pregnancy, prolapse, menopause
  • Men - prostate, after dribble
  • Children - bedwetting, day wetting, soiling
  • Chronic conditions such as diabetes, MS, parkinsons disease, etc.
  • Funding schemes • Continence products

Following are some travel tips for when you are out and about on an aeroplane, provided by the Continence Foundation:

  • Talk to your doctor about medicines to take away with you. Do you need prescription medicines or products for constipation, vomiting or diarrhoea? Keep your medicines in their original packaging when travelling overseas.
  • Book early and advise your agent of your needs. Book seats on the aisle, near a toilet or near the front of the bus/plane (where you can exit quickly).
  • Plan each stage of your trip accordingly. If you wear absorbent pads for bladder leakage, allow an extra supply for unexpected delays.
  • Inform airline staff of your needs so you can board the plane first. You'll be able to calmly organise and arrange your continence products, clothing and carry-on luggage.
  • Choose clothes in dark colours (to disguise any leakage)
  • For women travelling in the tropics, a sarong is handy to hide a leakage accident. It can also be placed on a chair. A jacket or cardigan can be tied around the waist to disguise an accident.
  • Take along a small toilet bag in your carry-on bag, plus a change of clothing. Disposable wipes are handy and especially good for faecal incontinence.
  • Drink plenty of ‘good' fluids (water is best) as air conditioning is dehydrating. Don't be tempted to cut down on fluids to reduce urine leakage as it can actually make things worse.
  • Eat light meals so you won't feel uncomfortable, bloated or queasy. Your digestion and body clock can be upset when travelling.
  • Avoid bladder irritants such as coffee, tea, alcohol, chocolate drinks, fizzy soft drinks and sports drinks. Spicy or acidic foods are best avoided too.
  • Stretch and walk as much as you can, to help with circulation and digestion. Seated exercises (like those recommended by airlines) are good.

Information sourced from The National Toilet Map and The Continence Foundation