As adults get older, their risk of slipping, falling, and sustaining injuries increases, and this sometimes happens because of issues with mobility, balance, vision, or a combination of physical and mental factors. At the same time, many seniors prefer to age in place in the homes they know and love. One way to make this happen safely for your older loved one is to take some time to age-proof his or her home. Here’s how.
Eliminate Possible Obstacles
A simple step you can take during the age-proofing process is removing anything your loved one might bump into or trip over in the home. This process typically involves:
• Removing excess furniture and other clutter
• Moving oddly placed or bulky stands or chairs away from common pathways
• Removing loose throw rugs that have no protective backing
Many older adults are choosing to age in place, and some need a helping hand to continue living at home safely and comfortably. Luckily, there is professional in-home care seniors can trust and rely on.
Add More Lighting
If your loved one has difficulty adjusting to lighting changes between rooms or frequently gets up to use the bathroom at night, make sure the home is well-lit. Options include placing nightlights in the hallway, using blinds that can be adjusted to let more natural light in, and installing wireless LED lights around stairways and other areas that are normally darker.
Make the Bathroom More Senior-Friendly
The bathroom is one of the most commonly used places in the home. It’s also where slips and falls can easily happen, so this is definitely one room you’ll want to focus on when age-proofing a house. Steps that can be taken to make a bathroom more senior-friendly include:
• Putting handrails next to the toilet and in the tub or shower
• Installing slip-resistant flooring
• Replacing a traditional bathtub with a no-curb shower or walk-in tub
In the golden years, it’s easier to maintain a high quality of life when home is a safer place to live. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of Huntsville senior care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments and social events, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping.
Put Regularly Used Items within Easy Reach
If your loved one is still able to cook and do everyday tasks that aren’t too demanding, make life easier for him or her by putting things within easy reach. It’s not practical to do this with everything, so just focus on regularly used items like cooking utensils and daily grooming products.
Set Up a Bedroom on the First Floor
Single-story homes tend to work best for seniors wishing to age in place. But if your loved one has a multistory home, you can still make it safer by setting up a bedroom on the first floor. One convenient way to do this is with a fold-out sleeper sofa that allows your loved one’s bed to be concealed when it’s not being used.
Plan Ahead with Remodeling
Should your loved one reach a point where he or she is ready to move forward with home renovation plans, make adjustments that will make the home more suitable for the golden years. Possibilities include:
• Installing stronger built-in grab bars that can safely support more weight
• Replacing carpeting or flooring that’s torn, damaged, or loose
• Repairing unstable inside and outside steps
• Installing a stair lift
• Investing in appliances that could make things easier, such as stoves/ovens that can be controlled with voice commands and fridges with slide-out shelves
Even when living in age-proofed homes, older adults often still need assistance with everyday tasks. If your senior loved one needs hourly or live-in care, Huntsville Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers can assist with exercise and mobility, prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and help with a wide array of other important daily tasks. Call (256) 716-9940 today to speak with a friendly and experienced Care Manager to formulate a home care plan for your loved one.