December 2, 2022
Senior-friendly home setups are nothing short of necessary once you decide to commit to becoming a senior’s long-term caregiver. There are safety strategies that you simply can’t overlook for the effective way in which they can greatly mitigate the risk of falls, which remain one of the leading causes of hospitalizations among seniors.
Other methods only make life easy for your elderly relative. A few are fairly inexpensive, while others may require investing a good sum of money. What’s sure is that assisted living communities near me can attest to these methods. We will be divulging all of these here, so you can have a convenient reference.
Making home safe for seniors should be considered no less serious than any renovation project done on a house. Having your home assessed beforehand will not only make sure that the changes you make will surely be worthwhile but help to pinpoint any potential weak areas that you may have overlooked.
You can even ask for extra tips from the one who will be conducting these examinations. Keep in mind that experts advise conducting these checks on every room in your home at least once a year. This recommendation anticipates the possibility of the senior’s needs changing over time, after all.
We need to acknowledge the fact that you will have to improve your whole home in order to promote true home safety for elderly. Most guidelines focus on rooms where falls are more prevalent, and as far as studies go, bathrooms still remain on top. That’s fine if you’re well aware of the senior’s capabilities and limitations.
Still, that doesn’t overshadow the fact falls can also happen in bedrooms, kitchens, stairwells, and yards (especially if the senior likes to tend a garden or do other outdoor housework).
These are nothing short of essential if your elderly elative has mobility issues that come as a result of conditions like nerve damage, loss of balance, or general age-related frailty. Grab bars positioned near areas prone to slipping like the toilet and shower can greatly reduce the risk of falls. They also provide plenty of leverage for seniors to pull themselves up without much of a struggle or enter showers with ease.
On the other hand, a walk-in shower simply makes bathing a whole lot easier and safer for a senior to access. They come with their own grab bars and a low sliding or swinging door that isn’t hard to close and open or for seniors who are having a hard time lifting their feet to get in.
Whether it’s at the top or bottom of the stairs, these areas need to be as well-lighted as possible. Keep in mind that seniors require stronger ambient light in general because failing eyesight happens due to aging. Be sure to keep risky areas such as stairwells, kitchens, and bathrooms as well-lit as possible, such as the usual practice done in the assisted living center near me.
You don’t always have to rely on artificial light to guide them, though. If your home has been heavy on blinds and curtains, now’s the best time to minimize your use of them. It also won’t hurt to paint your walls with lighter colors that will naturally brighten up a room and reduce glare in the process.
If you want to prevent falls as much as possible and not have to worry about slippery floors, then you should opt for non-skid mats or strips. Some floor paint can also be applied, as long as they’re guaranteed to be non-skid. Another good idea is to change most of your flooring to ribbed or simply use materials that are naturally slip-resistant (i.e. once that won’t need to be polished).
Seniors may also be heartened to know that they can take their safety into their own hands. For one, you can advise them to start wearing shoes or slippers with special non-skid soles.
This is another solution that is found in plenty of assisted living communities. That’s not to say that they should be limited to them. A medical alert system can promptly notify caregivers and other assigned personnel in the event that a senior suffers a fall. Usually, they’re equipped with thoroughly helpful features such as an auto-alert that will automatically be triggered should the accident happen.
Loss of balance and frailty are the common causes of falls. Wouldn’t it only be logical, then, to incorporate more activities in your senior loved one’s routine that will help him or her be in better physical shape?
If your home didn’t have a treadmill before, there’s no better time than now to buy one so you can encourage him or her to do regular light walking even while at home. You can also convert an unused room into a kind of mini-gym where most of the physical activities can be performed.
Assign an area where all of you can take part in meditative activities like yoga and tai chi. Both of these can improve balance, strength, flexibility, and coordination.
Please keep in mind that, according to studies, falls can cause serious health consequences on the elderly. They’re 100% preventable, as long as you follow most if not all of these tips. It goes without saying that your senior loved one deserves as much.
If you’re not ready to commit to being a long-term in-home caregiver, then it may be high time for you to start considering assisted living homes near me.