Aging is a natural part of life, and, with it, may come struggles with everyday living. Seniors might not have the mobility, agility, or vision they once used to have. This can make seemingly simple tasks like bathing and cooking more difficult and unsafe compared to earlier years of their life. It can even cause seniors to suffer from falls and injure themselves.
In such a situation, seniors will often seek some form of elderly care to provide them with the help they need to continue living a safe and healthy life.
Although some elderly individuals may decide to live in a nursing home or another type of assisted living facility, many seniors, and increasingly more, are choosing to remain at home and age in place. They have worked hard their whole lives to get and maintain their home, and it becomes a comfortable, familiar safe haven that is close to friends and loved ones. So, it is understandable for elderly individuals to want to remain at their home instead of leaving for a facility they are not used to.
Below are some simple tips our experienced caregivers recommend to avoid falls and maintain your senior loved one’s comfort and safety at home.
1.Organize and Clean Up the Home
When a place is messy and cluttered, it becomes unsafe for everyone. Items that are out in the open and in the way become tripping hazards. Just one misstep could cause anyone to fall and injure themselves no matter how young or old. Unfortunately, many falls lead to hospitalizations, broken bones, and traumatic brain injuries. Knowing this, an easy way to create a safer home environment is to simply clean and tidy up the home.
Remove unnecessary items such as small furniture, bags, loose mats, and rugs from the floor and walkways and place them in their proper spot. If these contents do not have somewhere to go, find a place for them so they are not just out in the open.
For example, if there are books and newspapers scattered, place books on a shelf, and recycle the newspapers. If there are clothes laying around, place them away in a laundry hamper with other dirty items. Instead of having shoes out in the open, organize them on a shoe rack in the closet.
Consider removing excess furniture or rearrange the furniture layout to open up space and make it easier for people to get around the home.
2.Eliminate Tripping Hazards
In addition to cleaning up the home, get rid of tripping hazards. Area and throw rugs may look nice and can spruce up a room, but they are also easy to trip over. It is not worth risking injury to have an attractive room. Knowing this, consider removing them from the home. If your elderly loved one insists on keeping their rugs, then make sure they are secured down with tape and/or grips.
Electrical and phone cords should not be sticking out where someone could easily trip on them. Make sure they are tucked behind furniture and/or kept along the walls.
3.Add Ample Lighting
When you can see where you are going, you can more safely move around a place. This is why sufficient lighting is crucial in a senior’s home, especially if the elderly individual has developed some vision problems. Take the time to either add more or improve upon the lighting in the home. Consider replacing existing light bulbs with ones of higher wattage. Night lights can be particularly helpful in providing some light during nighttime trips to the bathroom.
4.Provide Necessary Traction
Some surfaces are naturally more slippery than others, making it easier for people to fall. This can be the case with hardwood flooring and especially tile flooring that becomes wet. For these areas, including the bathtub, consider adding non-slip matting so that your elderly loved one has traction to combat slippery surfaces.
5.Install Assistive Devices
Adding assistive devices like ramps, handrails, and grab bars can provide seniors with a necessary sense of security and safety in their home.
When a senior uses a wheelchair, ramps can be of great help in entryways to the home, eliminating the need to step up onto stairs or a porch to enter their home. In multi-level homes, having a handrail provides elderly individuals with something to hold on to as they make their way up and down the stairs. Similarly, grab bars, which are often installed in the bathroom beside a toilet and/or in a tub/shower, give seniors something stable to help them get up and out from these places.
Professional Senior Home Care Services from Assisting Hands Home Care
Home care services are of great benefit to seniors aging at home. At Assisting Hands Home Care, we provide professional senior home care services to help seniors in West Palm Beach, Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, North Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, and the neighboring areas in Palm Beach County, who have chosen to age at home.
Our qualified caregivers will provide the home care elderly individuals need to lead safe and healthy lives. We work to make and keep the home safe for seniors and provide assistance with various tasks from personal care and meal preparation to light housekeeping and transportation services. With help from our home care services, you can feel at ease knowing Assisting Hands caregivers are always available to provide qualified care for you and your senior loved one.