If you’re like many people today, you may be caring for an older relative or friend, one who is reaching an elderly age where their mobility, memory and health may not be what it once was. While these are typically referred to the ‘Golden Years’, for many they aren’t so golden and issues with aches, pains and other problems become paramount and all encompassing. If this sounds like you or someone you know, you might be wondering how you can make changes in the home to help accommodate an elderly relative. Look no further. Here are some top ways you can help keep your home – or their own home – elder friendly for maximum benefit.
The installation of railings around the home can really help provide that extra layer of security when walking around or standing for longer periods of time. A great example of this is the use and install of bathroom specific railings, such as in showers, near toilets or just along the wall for added support. Bathrooms can be a slippery and accident-prone place, so the use of railings is a great way to mitigate any risks before they become potentially dangerous accidents. You can also install railings along long hallways, in bedrooms at bedsides to assist in getting up in the morning and in the kitchen where you may need to step away from the countertop after standing for long periods.
While rugs can be a great decorative feature in sitting rooms and bedrooms, they do pose a bit of a trip hazard. With rugs that aren’t gripped on the bottom, they can slide across the floor and create a serious issue for the elderly. Making sure rugs have grips or removing them altogether is a great way to ensure these nice additions to a room won’t cause unnecessary harm. Carpeting as well can pose a trip hazard, so ensure any loose corners are taken care of, especially if your elderly friend or relative shuffles their feet a lot.
If stairs are difficult, you could install a stairlift to make getting up and down the stairs much more easy and safe. Stairlifts can be as large or small as necessary and they don’t have to be too expensive either. The addition of a stairlift can likewise prolong your elderly friend or relative staying in their own home, often a point of comfort as they age. After all, who wouldn’t want to be able to stay in their own bed night after night?
Shelving is an easy amendment to make to any home. Moving commonly used items in the kitchen to easy to reach areas means there’s no bending down or having to get on a stool to try to get what you need, both of which reduce the risks of aches and pains or potential trips and falls. By identifying everything that is commonly used, and putting it in areas that are around table height, your elderly friend or relative can access their cake tins, pots, pans, and more without any issues whatsoever.
So there you have a couple of easy and foolproof ways to help create the ideal home for an elderly friend or relative. With such easy steps to take, it’s becoming more and more likely that elderly people can stay in their homes longer, helping them to ease into old age without needing to give up their home comforts.