Aging in Place Dangers and Remedies

Aging in Place Dangers and Remedies

Many of our aging loved ones would prefer to live at home as long as possible. Remaining in this familiar territory among loved ones helps the individual stay connected to the past and present. However, staying at home increases the risk accidents and injury. To make living at home safer for aging loved ones, you will need to reorganize every room of the house the individual may use.

Create a plan

Grab a notepad and pencil, and then head out to the car. Start taking notes at the location where your loved one will exit the vehicle to enter the home. Does the area have good lighting and an even terrain? How about handrails and ramps?

Head back into the home and inspect the doorway. Will you need to replace slippery welcome mats or install a peephole?

Move into the home and take notes in every room the individual plans to use. Make sure coffee pots and other appliances have automatic shut off features, as memory declines as we age.

Take Action 

Here are five dangers you can easily remedy in your home or in the homes of the people you care for:

• Poor lighting. Poor lighting indoors or outside can cause a fall hazard, as seniors may have vision problems that reduce visibility even more in poor lighting. Poor outdoor lighting could make you or someone you love a target for criminals. Make sure to light hallways, bathrooms, garages, and walkways brightly.

• Clutter also causes a fall hazard. Many older people are hesitant to throw things away; this may cause clutter to build up in walkways. Widen walkways by removing clutter and excess furniture.

• Throw rugs can pull your feet right out from under you. Remove throw rugs or tape them down.

• Bath and water hazards frequently pose safety issues the elderly. Burns from scalding water are common, especially among older people with diabetes who cannot feel the temperature of the water. Slippery floors are also a hazard. Turn the water heater down to 120 degrees Fahrenheit and use a shower chair.

• Cooking and fire hazards may pose a risk with older cooks who have shakier hands and shorter attention spans. Monitor cooking to prevent fires and ruined meals.

You can create a safe, happy environment for your loved one as he or she ages. For more information on how to make a home safer for a loved one, contact Always Best Care Senior Services. ABC Metrowest provides senior care in Boston Metrowest , including western Boston, and surrounding suburbs. Call today (877) 616-3404 or email hgoldstein@abc-seniors.com.

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