Wed, 01 Dec 2021

How to Make a Home Safe for Elderly Residents

19 Nov 2021, 17:42 GMT+10

Do you have an aging family member or friend who has begun to live at home alone? Alternatively, perhaps they have not lived alone for a long time and you are wondering how to help them transition back to it. Home care agencies are always looking for ways to promote independent living for seniors and people with disabilities. Therefore, there is a lot you can do to help your home care clients stay safe and independent.

Today, over half of all adults have at least one chronic health problem such as arthritis, asthma, cancer or cardiovascular disease. Additionally, people aged 75 years and older have a 70 per cent chance of having at least one chronic health problem. With this in mind, many people require assistance with daily activities such as cooking, bathing and managing personal hygiene.

Taking Care of the Elderly at Home

Many seniors have a hard time getting around due to chronic health problems such as stroke or heart attack. All of these issues can make it unsafe for someone to live alone, especially those with chronic health problems. If you have an elderly one who needs assistance with daily activities, consider making a safe living environment for them.

The elderly are at risk of injury from a fall. However, they may still want to maintain some degree of independence. In that case, you can do several things to make their home a safer place to live:

1. Fall Prevention

Making their home safe reduces the risk of injury from falling. Many elderly people fall because they are dizzy, lose their sense of balance or simply trip and fall. Other people suffer a heart attack, stroke or seizure while they are getting around the house.

2. Get a home alert system

Elderly fall victims sometimes suffer potentially 'life-threatening injuries,' including hip fractures, head traumas or broken bones. They could also die as a result. However, you can get a home alert system for use in case they fall.

A home alert system can come in for their help to connect with help immediately.

3. Get Rid of Hazards

Ensure floors are clean of clutter, especially small items such as shoes and toys. Keep electrical cords out of traffic areas, or if they are unavoidable, secure them so there is no risk of tripping.

Keep staircases clear of clutter and secure handrails that are sturdy enough to be reliable for your loved ones' safety.

In cooking areas, ensure all appliances have automatic shutoff if left on too long. Keep stove, oven and refrigerator knobs in a secure place out of reach.

4. Work on the Home Exterior

Make sure your home's exterior is free of tripping hazards such as an uneven sidewalk or broken pavers. Remove any trees or bushes that present a fall risk. In the garden, use gravel instead of mulch, and prune any low branches from trees to prevent falling.

5. Install Proper Lighting

Maintain adequate lighting throughout your home, including nightlights in bathrooms and hallways.

6. Buy them Safety Equipment

Make sure your loved ones' shoes have good soles with enough grip to prevent slipping. Also, ensure footwear has a softly rounded toe and non-skid shoe inserts for extra safety.

Place gates at the tops and bottoms of stairs to make it impossible for anyone to fall on them. Solid gates that use childproof latches are the most secure.

7. Install Proper Security Features

If doors have locks, ensure they work properly so that they do not lock out your loved ones out of the house. Replace any locks that feel flimsy or fragile.

Make sure all windows open and close without sticking, and consider adding locks to windows, which open too wide. Again, reassess whether you need window coverings at all times of day, particularly in bedrooms where people are sleeping.

Install locks on any cabinets with breakables or medications, and consider installing childproof latches for all cabinets, you do not want your loved ones to access.

Final Advice

The elderly need close care and monitoring. Therefore, it is important to make sure that they live in a safe environment. Use these tips to make them live comfortably and have peace of mind. Home alert systems will help them know that they can access help at the click of a button.

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