As the elderly go on with their lives, there are some things they can no longer do alone or are safe. It’s because they have weaker bones, making regular activities much more difficult. This can include walking up and down the stairs, grabbing a cereal box from the shelf, or even just sitting and standing on the sofa. With their difficulty in managing things, you can imagine how much more prone they are to accidents.
Home safety for the elderly is essential as one small accident can turn into a severe case as they have weaker bones and bodies. While you can always hop over here and see how assisted living tries to make their facility a safe place, you can always copy them and practice those safety features at home.
To help you out, listed below are some tips and advice to improve home safety for the elderly:
- Switch To Carpet Floors
One of the most common accidents the elderly experience is falling and slipping from their floors. This can happen due to a slippery floor finish or a wet floor that failed to be mopped over.
If you want to learn how to prevent falls in elderly, first consider replacing your entire flooring with carpet in order to provide as much cushioning as possible.This way, even if there’s something wet on the floor, the elderly would have no chance of slipping over the puddle but rather just squeeze the water in deeper. While it might be a bit harder to clean, they provide maximum safety, perfect for the elderly.
- Add A Wall Rail
Moving from one room to another can be challenging for most elderly, especially if they still don’t have canes and wheelchairs to help them move. While some might prefer to lean on walls for support, it’ll be best if you could install a wall rail instead. This way, they’d have something to grab on to, which can provide maximum support, rather than leaning on walls which can just help them to slip over. With a wall rail, they can use it to support their weight even if they’re just crossing the room.
- Keep Emergency Numbers Nearby
You can never know when an emergency could happen in every household. If the elderly live alone, it’d be best if you could keep emergency numbers nearby for them to get in touch with. Ideally, they should be around their phones so they can quickly give them a ring whenever an emergency arises.
Moreover, it should include 911, poison control, and important family member and friends’ contact numbers in case of emergency. As you list them down, ensure they’re in large and thick writing so they don’t have to look for their eyeglasses to read them.
- Use Non-Slip Footwear
Even if your home already uses a carpeted floor, maximizing floor safety for the elderly is extremely important to avoid slips and falls. For their indoor shoes, you should look for non-slip footwear that can provide them with maximum comfortability and safety. This way, they can help keep their feet warm while minimizing their risk of falling from the floor.
- Don’t Rush On Anything
If the elderly live alone, you should always remind them not to rush for anything as their safety is more important than missing a phone call. One of the most common reasons why people slip on the floor is because they’re in a hurry to answer a phone call. While the ringing might sound a bit panicky, there’s no need to rush to answer the call.
When something immediate happens, remind the elderly to keep their phase and move comfortably as much as possible. If it’s something important, they should be making another call right away.
- Remove Any Rugs
Some people add rugs to their floors to keep the space from being empty and add some decoration. While it can help make the room look complete and beautiful, they’re not the best choice if an elderly is living inside. With a rug, they can easily slip away even above carpeted floors.
While you can always nail them down, keeping them away might be the best choice. Moreover, it’s also important to remove any rugs from any entryway, including the landing of the stairs.
- Ensure Appliances Are Safe
Using appliances, especially in the kitchen, helps keep any home comfortable and easy, allowing you to create quick meals. It’ll enable people to do things quickly without putting too much effort into it.
However, before letting a senior use an appliance, you should ensure they’re still in great working condition and are free from any exposed wires, which can result in fire and accidents. If you notice a faulty piece of appliance, don’t try to repair it, but replace it immediately to ensure its safety.
- Install Grab Bars In Bathroom
The bathroom is one of the most common places where seniors slip and fall. It could be because they’re having difficulty getting in and out of the toilet, and they’ll need extra support. To help your seniors sit in and get up with ease, you should install grab bars in your bathroom that they can easily hold on to.
Moreover, you should also install one by the entryway so they have something to grab as they bring themselves to the toilet or shower area.
- Put Rubber Mats In The Bathroom
Along with installing grab bars in your bathroom, you should also put rubber mats to maximize safety. A bathroom’s surface can get very slippery, especially since water is highly present around the area.
To avoid any slips and falls, you should put rubber mats in the bathroom, preferably inside the shower area, for maximum safety. If you could add a small chair to go with it, it’d be better for your seniors so they wouldn’t have a hard time standing up for too long.
- Consider Using Sensor Lights
Seniors tend to have trouble flicking the light switch, especially when they need to go to the bathroom at night. A dark pathway can lead to accidents as they can’t see what’s happening around them. To help your seniors navigate the hallways through the night, you should use sensor lights that automatically open as they walk through them. This way, they don’t have to worry about finding the switch but just go their way to the bathroom.
Having a senior live inside a household requires plenty of safety features to ensure they won’t encounter any harm or accidents. As you try to make things non-slippery, you should also remind them of what they should and shouldn’t do to avoid slips and falls. While the add-ons might be a handful, they could help guarantee their safety, putting yourself at ease even when you’re away.
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