Managing the accessibility of your home becomes increasingly important with age. Seniors tend to struggle with balance, muscle movement, and flexibility. This causes problems with mobility and makes it difficult to navigate around the home. Consider making changes in home design directly catered to senior safety. There are many safe home design options for seniors depending on what your loved one struggles with. Implementing these features can ensure that your space is safe to live in.
The bedroom is the location where seniors spend much of their time. Unfortunately, it's also a location of accidents due to low lighting and unsafe furniture organization. To prevent
missteps, a senior's bedroom should have appropriate lighting in both the main room and in any closets. Further, a low-profile bed with a bed rail will help your loved one get in and out of bed easier while preventing falls. Lastly, a phone atop a nightstand at the same level as the bed allows emergency calls to be made anytime.
Accidents can happen in the kitchen when items are far out of reach. Consider removing all upper cabinets, focusing solely on lower shelving and drawers, and moving the microwave to the counter level. This way, your loved one won't have to make unsafe maneuvers to access
their pantry. Further, installing countertops with rounded edges prevents bumps and bruises. If your loved one uses a walker or wheelchair, consider removing islands to increase space. Similarly, place a lightweight chair in the kitchen to allow you to sit while cooking healthy meals.
Living Area Changes
Your living area is a common location where you may travel through frequently. This means that it should be free of clutter to decrease fall risk. Other methods to reduce fall risk and increase senior safety include removing door thresholds. These raised areas can cause you to trip. Combined with an open floor plan and by removing rugs, your living room will be safe for all seniors with poor balance. Doing so also prevents wheelchairs and walkers from catching on clutter or rug edges which may lead to injury.
Seniors struggle to stay safe in their bathrooms. With all the water splashing from your sink
and bathtub and the slick ground and high steps, these rooms pose significant fall risks to seniors. For a safe bathroom design, consider implementing a walk-in shower or tub, so you don't have to lift your legs to enter the shower. This puts seniors off balance and causes slipping. Place non-slip shower stickers on the ground for added grip and traction to limit slipping in the tub. Lastly, adding grab bars and shower seats can help stabilize your body.
Designing a home for safer use for elders can be complicated to do alone, especially for seniors. Get paid to take care of family with the CDPAP program or hire a home care aide to help reorganize your loved ones' home for safety. Contact us at Rockaway Home Care to learn how we can help you today.