In-home safety is the number one concern of adult children for their aging parents. “Will they be safe staying in their home?” It’s a question we hear all the time. The answer is usually ‘yes’ (with exceptions, of course), but there are things that the children need to do for their parents to make sure they can stay at home safely.
For that reason we want to provide 7 tips for making your loved one’s home safe as they get older:
- Consider a medical alert system. You remember the commercial, “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” That could happen to your loved one. Make sure they can easily reach out for help if they need it.
- Get up slowly. When they get up from a sitting or sleeping position, make sure they do it slowly so they don’t get light-headed and lose their balance.
- Remove throw rugs. They may protect the carpet, but they can easily create a tripping/falling hazard. Your loved ones need an unobstructed path throughout their home.
- Remove items that can block their path. Following up to the point above, your loved ones need a clear path not just from removing throw rugs, but also from furniture, paper piles, cords, or other hazards. Their route should be free from all obstructions.
- Remove step stools. The risk of injury from a fall increases exponentially for every foot you are above the ground. If something is out of reach from your loved one, move it so it is within reach when they are on the ground.
- Install railings. If your loved ones are unsteady on their feet, install railings throughout the house, inside and out, including places like the shower. This will give them one more place to steady themselves if they need it.
- Consider a stair lift or have stairs with non-slip surface. If your loved ones live in a two story house and they need to access the upstairs often, you may want to consider a stair lift if they are not steady going up and down. At the very least, make sure the stairs have a non-slip surface.
- Use assisted devices in the home. Does your loved one use a cane or walker when they go out, but they don’t think they need to use it in their home? Most falls occur going from bedroom to bathroom. Make sure those devices are near their bed so when they get up they can easily reach them.
- Have lights on throughout the house. It may be well-placed nightlights, but make sure your loved ones have a little illumination at night so they don’t have to fumble for a light switch in the dark and they can see where they are going.
At Assisting Hands Home Care, it is important to us that your loved ones are in a safe environment. We can provide you with a free in-home fall prevention assessment so you know the best way to protect them while they are in their home. Our skilled in-home care associates can also provide your loved one with safe transportation to and from doctors and other appointments, grocery shopping or other errands.
Whether you need someone to be with them during the day, in the evening or overnight, we can accommodate your needs. You will sleep better knowing that they aren’t home alone when they need help with medication, fall prevention, personal care, eating or other needs.