When you’re trying to make a senior-friendly home, safety is paramount. Aging in place is far more preferable to most elderly adults than the alternative of living in a nursing home for seniors. But as a senior get older, he or she can start to demonstrate that living in the residence they’ve known for much of their life is now fraught with potential hazards.
Sometimes the alternative is not a care facility but the home of a relative. It’s often less expensive and it can allow that loved one to watch over their senior relative so as to keep that person healthy and happy. If this is something that you are contemplating for an elderly member of your family, there are some steps you should first take to ensure that your home remains senior-friendly at all times.
Here are six things to consider before you make this big change in yours and your senior’s lives:
1. Avoiding Slip and Fall Incidents
A fall to the ground is one of the most dangerous threats to any senior citizen. It could result in broken bones and potential health issues related to infection and disease. So, the first thing you must do around the home is to eliminate anything that could cause an elderly adult to trip and lose their balance.
Check that rugs and carpets don’t have any loose edges, secure any errant wires and cords, and move furniture and other clutter out of walkways and room entrances.
2. Proper Lighting
Among the leading causes of trip and fall occurrences is a lack of visibility. With that being the case, be sure that the house is well-lit, especially in areas that pose the greatest risk like stairwells, hallways, and the rooms where a senior spends most of his or her time.
Don’t forget to increase your outdoor lighting as well. After the sun goes down it can be very tough to see where you are going and for seniors with vision issues, the problem is exacerbated.
3. Working Alarms
A good smoke detector and CO2 alarm are essentials in any household but for those homes with a senior they are even more critical.
4. Emergency Response
You’ve probably seen some form of medical response unit or system on TV and these assistive devices are very useful in the event of an emergency. The most advanced among these response systems are equipped with GPS locators and self-triggering mechanisms to get an elderly adult the help she or he needs even when they are unable to call for that help.
5. Assistive Devices
Consider putting a railing or special chair in the bathtub or shower to reduce the risk of injury in the bathroom. Special phones for the hard of hearing are also available and useful. Even sensors that can shut off an oven or stove in the event is left on by mistake. All of these are good things to have in the home.
6. Extra Set of Hands
If you are unable to be at home 24/7 to care for a senior’s needs, search out a good provider of reliable home care in Columbus. This hired help can be there to watch your elderly adult in the event you are not going to be home for an extended period of time.