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Six Tips For Making Your Home Safe For Aging Parents

As people get older they may have difficulty hearing, seeing or walking. If your aging parents live with you or visit you often, there are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of falls and other injuries. The following are six tips for making your home safe for aging parents.

Remove any fall hazards

Although throw rugs may add warmth and interest to the decor of a home, the edges of the rugs and placement on slick surfaces can lead to dangerous falls. Electrical cords can also cause falls. Cluttered areas where older adult may walk can also cause problems. Clear floors of any of these hazards to make walking safer for aging parents.

Install grab bars and handrails

Grab bars provide stability by helping users gain balance. They can can reduce fatigue brought about when an older person must stand for even a short period of time. Grab bars make it easier to sit down or get up from a toilet. They can be placed at the entrance or inside of a shower. Whether stairs on on the inside or on the outside of the home, it is advisable to have handrails on both sides of the stairs.

Place everyday items within easy reach

Avoid storing everyday items too high or too low for aging parents to reach. This includes dishes, food, clothing and other personal items. Medication should be stored in a secure place if young children are in the home, but in an area that is easily accessible for the aging parent who is able to take medication on his or her own.

Make sure the home has adequate lighting

Visual impairment and limited mobility means that older adults need to see where they are going and what medications they are taking. Bedside lamps should be easy to reach. Nightlights can be used in hallways and bathrooms to help the aging parent who must get up during the night to use the restroom. Task lighting in kitchens and other areas make it easier to see and read medication labels or recipes.

Trade knobs for handles

Cabinets and drawers are easier to open when the knobs are traded for handles. Doors with lever style handles are easier to grasp, especially for persons who may suffer from arthritis. A faucet with a single lever handle will be easier to manipulate than faucets with knobs.

Seek the services of an in home care professional

If aging parents must be left in the home for several hours each day, consider hiring in home care professionals. In home care professionals can provide peace of mind by helping older adults with activities such as bathing, dressing, taking medications and eating. The in home care provider can assess the care recipient’s condition and recommend strategies for keeping him or her safe and healthy at home.

Bringing an aging parent to live in the home can pose some challenges, but making a few changes around the home can ease the transition. Hiring an in home care professional can also be helpful making sure a loved on receives the best care.

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