6 Tips to Improve Home Safety for Your Parents
If your loved one lives on their own at home, they may be less safe than you realize. We’ve created a list of things that you can do to make sure that your senior is safe and secure in their home.
The potential for danger magnifies when a person is a senior. Your loved one should feel safe in their home, but as they age, many unexpected things can become potential threats to their safety. It is essential to check up on their home to see if anything needs to be fixed, changed, or added to ensure their safety. We’ve compiled a list of home safety tips for seniors to minimize any potential dangers and ensure that your loved one stays safe at home.
Tip #1: Consider investing in a doorbell with a camera
To make sure that the only people entering your loved one’s home are those who are supposed to be there, a camera doorbell can be a significant investment. The doorbell has a small camera attached and runs a video onto a computer or smartphone so that your loved one can see who is outside their home from the safety of indoors. If they aren’t sure who is at the door, they can ignore the doorbell until the person outside leaves. Additionally, doorbell cameras can be used if packages are stolen from their doorstep to find out who the perpetrator was or if someone is trespassing on his or her property.
Tip #2: Have a list of emergency numbers nearby
In the instance that disaster strikes and your loved one needs to contact someone for help, it is a wise idea to have a list of emergency numbers next to the phone. In the heat of the moment, they may forget a phone number, and so having it written there can be a huge help. Some important numbers to have are 911, poison control (1-800-222-1222), emergency contacts such as family members and friends, and their healthcare provider’s office.
Tip #3: Make Modifications
Make sure that their house is safe, home modifications for seniors can become necessary, especially if they are in a wheelchair or are a fall risk.
Some adaptations that can be of great help are:
A waterproof seat in the shower
A stair climber
No-slip strips in the bathtub
Wide doorways and halls
Controls and switches that are reachable from a wheelchair or bed
Some things to get rid of:
Wheels on chairs
Rubber-backed bath mats
Locks on the bedroom and bathroom doors
Electric cords and clutter
Tip #4: Alarms and Sensors
To prevent fires or carbon monoxide poisoning, ensure that smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are in your loved one’s bedroom and around the house. Make sure that the stove and oven are always turned off, as seniors sometimes may be forgetful with things like this. Installing automatic devices that will turn off the oven and stove or even installing an induction cooktop that turns off when a pot is removed from the burner can be beneficial as well. Have a fire extinguisher within reach in case. Furthermore, if they are prone to wandering, it could be a good idea to install monitors and sensor alarms that will alert someone if they unexpectedly leave the house without any supervision. This can help prevent wandering for elders and makes sure that they are accounted for at all times.
Tip #5: Keep walking aids within reach
If your loved one needs assistance walking whether it be with a cane, walker, or wheelchair, make sure that their walking aid is always nearby to avoid falls for the elderly. Also, have them store a flashlight or nightlight near their bed so that they can see where they are going at night to prevent falls furthermore.
Tip #6: First Aid Kit
A first aid kit should be readily accessible at all times in case they become injured. Some good products to include are band-aids, antibacterial cream, gauze, and so on.
After following these tips, your senior’s home should be a much safer place for them to live. It is a beautiful thing for them to continue to be independent later in their lives, but if their homes are not safe, their independence will dwindle. If you’ve done everything you can to make their house more safe for them and they still seem to be struggling to live alone, consider hiring a care provider who can come to their home and check up on them on a regular basis.
Care providers for seniors can be a great compromise if they don’t feel ready for assisted living but still require little extra help when needed. At Homecare California, we’ve cared for folks like this for years who want little extra assistance, and offer a wide variety of types of care for your loved ones. Their safety is always our number one priority, and we want to do everything we can to help them as well as you stay that way.