Keeping seniors safe is key to providing them with a more independent lifestyle. It is important to learn where the potential dangers lie throughout the home. By eliminating these dangers, the senior is able to move freely, safely around the home. Around one-third of seniors aged 65 and older fall each year, as they get older, the risks for falls increases to half.
Some ways that you can senior proof your home to make it safe include the following tips:
- Remove items that can cause falls or trips in the home – this could be everything from loose rugs to clutter around the house. Electrical cords and small furniture can cause falls and should be moved out of the way.
- Secure all carpets to the floors so that they cannot come up, slip out of place or bunch up and cause a trip to happen.
- Arrange the furniture to provide open spaces, and remove the clutter from around the home. By providing open spaces, and clear walkways; everyone is able to move more easily.
- If there are hardwood floors, or other slippery surfaces; place non-skid strips on them to prevent falls from happening and to give the surface more grip.
- Clean up spills as soon as they happen, or ask someone else too.
- Have adequate lighting throughout the entire home. The majority of falls that happen are because there is not enough light shining in each of the rooms. Lighting on stairways is especially important.
- Have salt or sand placed outside in the winter months when ice is a hazard. If at all possible, do not leave the home unattended and always walk with someone on the high ice areas.
- Railings, grab bars and handrails should be placed on stairs and in tubs and showers. Grab onto the bars when using any of these things to prevent falls.
- Make items used the most in the home highly accessible by moving and rearranging items for better access. Straining and reaching for objects shouldn’t happen with the right rearranging throughout the home.
Did you know, 85% of seniors have done nothing to prepare their homes for aging. By going through the home of the senior you know, and helping them prepare for safety; you’re removing potential dangers that can do harm in the future. Keep seniors safe, hospital bills down and the quality of life high with the right safety methods in any senior’s home.
If you suspect that an elderly friend or family member has fallen, bring them to the hospital or their physicians office right away. A fall can be a serious health problem. The physician may suggest physical therapy, pain medications and have a nurse visit on a regular basis to help with mobility and tasks around the home. Some seniors may need hip replacement surgery if the fall that they went through was hard enough. This would require extensive recuperative time and less mobility in the future. Preventing these falls can help the senior stay active, while not getting hurt in the process.
If your parent falls, and no one is around; they should have access to something that may save their life. With the right tool, such as a Pioneer medical alert system, they can call for help, wherever they are.