Making home modifications for elderly care can greatly enhance the safety, accessibility, and comfort of the living environment.
One of the things that Serving You Homecare provides to our clients during their free Homecare assessment is (with their permission) to walkthrough their homes checking for items that could increase fall risks and recommending the following modifications to consider to increase safety:
1. Install grab bars: Install grab bars in the bathroom near the toilet, shower, and bathtub to provide stability and support for the elderly person. Make sure they are securely mounted to the wall.
2. Improve lighting: Adequate lighting is essential to prevent falls and improve visibility. Install bright, energy-efficient lighting throughout the house, especially in hallways, stairways, and entryways. Consider motion sensor lights for added convenience.
3. Remove tripping hazards: Remove or secure loose rugs, clutter, and any other tripping hazards from walkways and stairs. Ensure that all floor surfaces are even and free of obstacles.
4. Create a step-free entrance: If possible, create a step-free entrance by installing a ramp or a gradual slope. This will make it easier for the elderly person to enter and exit the house, especially if they use mobility aids such as wheelchairs or walkers.
5. Install handrails on stairs: Install sturdy handrails on both sides of staircases to provide support and stability. Make sure the handrails are at a comfortable height and extend beyond the top and bottom steps.
6. Consider a stairlift or chairlift: If the elderly person has difficulty climbing stairs, consider installing a stairlift or chairlift. This will allow them to safely and comfortably navigate between different levels of the house.
7. Adapt the bathroom: Make the bathroom more accessible by installing a raised toilet seat, a shower chair or bench, and a handheld showerhead. Consider adding non-slip mats or adhesive strips in the shower and bathtub.
8. Adjust countertop and sink heights: Lower countertops and sinks to a more ergonomic height for the elderly person. This will reduce the strain on their back and make daily tasks, such as cooking and cleaning, more comfortable.
9. Install handrails in key areas: Install handrails in key areas of the house, such as hallways and bedrooms, to provide additional support and stability. This can be especially helpful for those with balance issues or mobility challenges.
10. Consider home automation: Explore home automation systems that can make daily tasks easier for the elderly person. This can include voice-controlled lighting, smart thermostats, and remote-controlled appliances.
Remember, it's important to assess the specific needs and abilities of the elderly person before making any modifications. Consider consulting with a professional, such as an occupational therapist or a certified aging-in-place specialist, to ensure that the modifications are tailored to their specific requirements. For questions or to book your free assessment, contact Serving You Homecare here.