There are a few changes that must be made to make homes safer and more secure for you as you grow old, or for your aging loved ones. These changes, though few and simple, are essential in preventing minor to even significant accidents and mishaps. A few precautions have the power to save lives, so why not?
Declutter and Organize
Start off by clearing out space. Your room, the entire house, in fact, should be easy to move about and walk in. Move away from any unnecessary objects and try to stick to essentials only. This not only means more space and less tripping over and toe-stubbing, but it also means lesser cleaning and maintaining to do. Speaking of which, also make sure that most things are organized so that you where exactly where you find what you are looking for immediately.
One of the most important updates to a safer senior home is the rails! Although more or less all staircases have rails now, they are but more decorative than functional. It is therefore very important that you install a rail for your staircase that is very sturdy and strong, and able to at least hold a person’s weight on them. However, sometimes, no matter how strong the rail may be, achy joints and weak muscles keep seniors from walking up and down it anyway. A stair lift is a wonderful device for automatically carrying you up and down without having to move a muscle!
Next thing to look into is the flooring of the house. And nothing is better for seniors that a non-slip flooring. Avoid keeping the floor bare and exposed. Layer on a non-slip material that offers traction and tack to the feet or shoes while walking. Make sure this flooring reaches into the bathroom, staircase and terrace as well. A non-slip layer not only prevents accidents from slipping and tripping, but it also helps keep feet warmer than a bare floor.
Safety Equipment and Devices
You want to make sure that your house, along with you in it, doesn’t burn to a crisp. To prevent this, install from good quality fire extinguisher in multiple spots around the house. Make sure the senior resident knows how to use it too! The same goes for a smoke detector. Forgetting things on the stove or in the oven isn’t an old tale. It happens to everyone and more so, too forgetful seniors. Don’t take the chance. Install detectors all around the house, or at least in the kitchen and living area. As for communication, we recommend that the senior uses very loud mobile or telephones. Keeping a medical buzzer to alert local ER about any problem is also very useful.
Assigning a person or people to do regular checks and visitations to a senior’s home is one of the best ways to ensure their safety and wellbeing. Whether it be through a 911 welfare check, or friendly neighbors doing the rounds, or the senior’s kids stopping by, checking up on them very regularly is essential. It also vastly helps if the senior resident keeps a trained service dog, among other domestic animals, for company and safety. It is also very important that they do their part as well. Seniors should not try and attempt to do any sort of physically demanding maintenance job on their own and while alone at home or start a new exercise routine. Always have someone else, or a professional, do it for them.
Bathroom Safety Check
One of the safe ways to up the safety inside a potentially dangerous bathroom of a senior is by installing a walk-in tub. This tub is just like a regular tub except it has an opening or a door. This means a senior will not have to lift legs or try too hard to get into the bath. It is also great for disabled, handicapped or mobility challenged seniors. You have a seat in the tub and can slap on a bathroom mat on the bottom of it to prevent slipping.
House security alarm
To ultimately establish a safe senior home, you must also ensure that the outside and surrounding of the home is safe for them as well. And because seniors who live alone are vulnerable and easy targets for criminals like thieves and burglars, it has become very important to install a sophisticated house alarm system. This will go off and alert the local police department and the senior if there’s any break-in from unwanted intruders. Also, never open the door to a stranger without proof of purpose (delivery man, pizza guys, insurance seller, etc.), and invest in a good CCTV outside the house.