Seniors have special needs that require consideration as the effects of age begin to take their toll. Many of them cannot function quickly or use much body strength. Some of them are wheelchair bound, and others have trouble seeing. Most importantly, elderly bodies don’t heal as quickly or as effectively as they did in former years. Injuries resulting from falls can have a devastating effect on the continued health of our seniors. If you are a child or a care provider for an individual reaching their golden years, there are some home-improvement modifications which can help improve and sustain their quality of life. Consider some of these suggestions:
1. Install a Stair Lift or Elevator
Ramblers and one-story apartments are ideal for aging individuals, but moving is inconvenient and not necessary at every stage of aging. Alternatively, consider installing a stair lift to move from one story to the next or install an elevator. The motorized lift is designed for elderly people who have problems walking up the stairs and not just wheelchaired individuals. These devices improve mobility and safety.
2. Install Bathroom Safety Features
The bathroom is the most dangerous place for seniors. Many of them spend a lot of time in the bathroom, and most of their accidents occur in this room. At the least, build lift rails near the bath and hand rails for ease of walking. Place rugs on the floor to prevent common slips and falls. Medicare and other insurance may even approve the installation of a walk-in bath if recommended by a medical professional.
3. Install Motion Sensor Lights and Doors
Install motion sensors that provide automatic controls for your lights and doors. You should be concerned about the overall safety of your senior parents at home. Innovations in home automation and security systems can protect against burglary and even alert you to accidents and wandering dementia patients. Research security systems for seniors that are affordable and reliable.
4. Eliminate Fire Hazards
Oil fires or electrical fires pose a significant threat to seniors. Smoke inhalation can seriously disrupt health, and aging bodies may not be able to respond as quickly to a fire outbreak. Dementia patients are particularly vulnerable, as they may leave on stoves and ovens or engage in other risky behaviors. Prevent fires by eliminating potential fire hazards around the house. Be cautious about where you put candles and flammable items. Install smoke detectors or sprinklers that turn on automatically.
5. Make Use of Handrails
Install handrails that guide elderly people as they move around the house. Slips and falls are the most common accidents that harm seniors. Handrails can help improve mobility, independence, and dignity without exposing them to unnecessary risk.
Seniors want to be treated with respect and maintain their dignity. They want to feel that they are intelligent and valued. While the effects of age will inevitably take a toll on their independence, we have a responsibility to honor the elders of our generation by helping them enjoy their last years to the best of our ability. Accessibility, mobility, and safety are vital to this effort.