Older people prefer to stay in their homes as long as possible instead of moving to an assisted living facility or a retirement community. This helps them retain their mobility, independence, and cognitive abilities. Although Texas has great facilities enabling the elderly to live comfortably, there are still those who prefer to continue living in their home.
Paid contractors and experienced HHS (Health and Human Services) staff can help older Texans access services that help them live independently in their own homes, give family caregivers tools to do their job, provide access to meals at home, and many more benefits. So, either you renovate the entire place, or find a new one, steps must be taken to provide safety and comfort for the elderly.
Below we’ll break down a few ways to age-proof your house and enable safe and comfortable living.
An obvious step to provide appropriate living for the elderly would be to gradually renovate your home. Most elderly prefer to continue living at home, although some of them might need assistance whether it’s from a family member or a caregiver. Age-proofing your home is a must, but if you’re not able to provide that, you must think of alternative ways like renting a place nearby so you’ll be able to visit them often and help with their needs.
For example, if you live in a suburban city like Lewisville, you can search for apartments near Lewisville TX, and find one that best suits the needs of your older loved one. Living at home means living in a comfortable house alone where they’ll have the freedom to take care of themselves for as long as they can. This helps them maintain their independence, and avoid feelings of despair and abandonment.
When it comes to providing them with comfort and stability, an appropriate bed is a must-have. For example, an adjustable home hospital bed is a comfortable solution that provides flexibility and independence. These beds usually look like any other bed and are designed to hide their electric components.
Traditional beds may present a hazard if the person cannot easily maneuver them. The elderly usually prefer to have an adjustable bed so they can get on the bed and get out of it comfortably without needing assistance. So, this is another way of giving them comfort and providing them with independence to take care of themselves without any help from others. Additionally, if the person requires assistance, an appropriate bed would be a great choice to make the job much easier.
Eliminate potential obstacles
Removing potential obstacles from the house is an important step to securing a better and safer home for your older loved one. For example, you can reduce the number of furniture pieces in the rooms, simplifying the seating arrangements. This will leave a generous distance between the walls and furniture pieces to create pathways that would be easy and safe to navigate.
Also, don’t forget to get rid of excess clutter, and arrange the cables around the house so the elderly won’t trip. Install good lighting in each room and especially the hallways. Railings are a must if the elderly cannot stably walk, for example on the stairs, outside the home, and bathroom. Throw away rugs and install slip-resistant flooring in baths, kitchens, and foyers.
Make the bathroom and kitchen safe and easy to use
Bathrooms pose a major danger as we get older, so renovating the bathroom is another very important thing to consider since older adults may need assistance for using the toilet, washing their face, or taking a bath. Consider installing a taller profile toilet, and replace the bathtub with a large shower with no curbs. Just make sure you outfit the shower with slip-resistant flooring, an adjustable handheld showerhead, a fold-down seat, and easy to reach controls.
The kitchen also needs to go through remodeling to make it easier and safer for use. Removing obstacles, and providing simple kitchenware that doesn’t pose danger is the first thing you can do. Provide them with meals so they won’t have to use the kitchen to make food to avoid hazardous situations. Round the edges, pick drawers instead of doors, install pullout pantries, and so on. Also, don’t overlook the floor, and make sure you put anti-skid flooring that will give elders a better grip while walking.
Install a ramp
Stairs are usually the biggest problem for older adults who have trouble getting around. Brighter lights and handrails can make stairs safer, but consider replacing indoor or outdoor steps with ramps. Nonprofit companies are providing free wheelchair ramps for Texas residents which makes their life much easier. It’s also less risky to fall and break something, so it’s a good way to avoid hazardous situations.
Especially for disabled and frail seniors, ramps are an essential part of maintaining their independence, thus the ability to live at home. They can get more of their daily activities accomplished with less assistance if they have a ramp making it easier to use a wheelchair or electric scooter. They’ll be more likely to interact socially and access social services. Also, ramps serve an essential function in emergencies should medical staff need to enter or exit their home.
Today’s tech-centric world offers many gadgets that can make life easier and simpler. Installing remote-controlled window shades, electric door locks, or lighting will not only improve their safety but also make it easier for them to roam around the house. From robot vacuums to ovens that automatically shut off after a certain time, there are plenty of ideas, but don’t forget to start with the bigger things listed above.