Whether your older parents moved in years ago or plan to in the next month, take some time to secure your home on their behalf. Due to the mobility and balance problems many seniors face, you’ll need to account for their limited capacity. Here are a few of the best ways to make your home safer for your aging parents.
Cleanliness is one of the most important factors in home safety. Even without senior members in your household, cleanliness reduces tripping hazards and debris buildup. Clear the floor of any of your children’s or pets’ toys, as well as any other unnecessary clutter. If you have shiny hardwood or tile floors, you may want to add a few rugs for extra friction. Spilled water on smooth floors is hard to spot and quite slippery for older adults with mobility challenges.
A critical piece of readying your home is creating an emergency plan. Though this doesn’t directly involve adapting physical spaces in your home, it does require certain preparations. A medical emergency could happen at any time, especially with the fragile body of an aging parent. As such, you should have a plan in place before an accident occurs. Write down all relevant emergency phone numbers for their hospital, caregiving service, healthcare provider, and insurance agency. You should also know the route to the nearest hospital and health facilities. Keep all your parent’s medical information in one place, along with all medication details, so that you can fill out intake forms and inform the hospital staff.
Include your parent in this process as well. They should know what will happen if they fall or pass out. You should especially work with them on emergency planning after they return from the hospital. It is not uncommon for problems such as UTIs and surgical complications to arise once patients come home. Put proper after-surgery home care and plans in place to prevent further harm.
Each room in your house can present challenges to an aging adult, but focus your attention on the bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen. Between low reclining surfaces, slippery floors, and sharp objects, these rooms could present a myriad of dangers. You don’t need to add baby locks or anything like that, but avoid unnecessary injuries with proper precautions. Check the floor type, lighting, stairs, sharp corners, and hard surfaces around your home. Each of these, without the appropriate alterations, could cause an accident.
Care for your parent by caring for your home. Know the ways to make your home safer for your aging parents, and take steps today to secure their safety. The last thing you want is for a small mishap to turn into a serious medical problem. If you need help caring for your aging parent, reach out to our team at Fedelta Home Care to find a solution that works for you.