According to the National Council on Aging, falls are the leading cause of both non-fatal and fatal injuries in the elderly. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that over one million seniors over the age of 65 go to the emergency room each year for injuries caused by everyday items. Checking over your senior loved one’s home and taking the time to make it safer can prevent falls and other accidents from occurring.
1. Install Grab Bars in the Bathroom
Getting on or off the toilet or in and out of the shower can be problematic for seniors who have back or knee conditions or other mobility issues. Installing a grab bar can prevent your loved one from falling when stepping out of the bathtub and help him or her get off of the toilet alone safely.
Hiring a caregiver to spend time with your loved one is one of the best ways to increase safety in the home. When researching agencies that provide home care, Huntsville families are usually looking for flexible care plans, compassionate and highly trained caregivers, and 24/7 availability. Whether you need respite care to take a break from your caregiving duties or your senior loved one needs around-the-clock assistance at home, you can rely on Home Care Assistance.
2. Hide Cords
If your loved one has extension cords or appliance cords that are strung across hallways or walkways, they could cause a tripping hazard. Hide them out of sight by running them against walls or behind appliances.
3. Remove or Tack Down Rugs
Loose rugs can cause seniors to trip and fall, and rugs with nonslip backings can still be tripped over. Remove the rugs from your loved one’s home, or tack them down to prevent falls.
4. Keep Often-Used Kitchen Items Easily in Reach
If your loved one is making dinner and suddenly needs the salt on a high shelf, he or she may be tempted to use a step stool or small ladder to get the out-of-reach item. Falls from step stools and ladders are the cause of many elderly injuries. Keeping items your loved one might need on lower shelves or on the counters prevents him or her from having to get assistance to reach the needed items.
A professional caregiver can help your loved one stay safe in the kitchen and other areas of the home. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated homecare, you can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.
5. Ensure Lighting Is Adequate
During the evening hours, the darkness and shadows can make moving around difficult, causing missteps that can lead to dangerous falls. Installing lights that automatically turn on when other lights dim could help your loved one have an easier time navigating the home.
6. Keep Walkways Clear
Look over the various walkways in your loved one’s home to ensure they’re clear. Furniture that’s angled, juts out, or partially blocks entranceways or walkways can cause injuries. Rearranging furniture to give your loved one plenty of space to move around is essential. If your loved one uses a walker or wheelchair, it may be necessary to remove furniture to allow for extra space.
7. Use Nonslip Treatments in the Bathtub
Too many people rely on nonslip mats to prevent slips and falls from occurring in the shower or bath. However, nonslip mats can wear out over time, losing suction and causing slips. Applying a nonslip treatment to a bathtub or shower or using stick-on nonslip strips can make bathing safer.
Senior-proofing a home while managing other caregiving duties can be overwhelming. Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Huntsville Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home. To schedule a no-obligation consultation, call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (256) 716-9940.