Baton Rouge

(225) 926-2031

Denham Springs

(225) 664-4126

Baton Rouge

(225) 926-2031

Denham Springs

(225) 664-4126

aging at home.jpg

Aging at Home

aging at home.jpg

As a senior adult or the child of an aging parent, housing considerations factor into a family’s long-term care and provision. Whether living independently or under your child’s roof, protecting yourself from falls becomes a growing challenge as the years pass.

Since the senior’s safety is vital to sustained independence, let us look at a variety of home modifications that can provide a safer environment. These small, medium, and large adjustments may prevent further complications down the road.

SMALL CHANGES:

  1. Lighting
    1. Install nightlights to illuminate walkways inside the house
    2. Convert switch lamps to touch-operated lamps
    3. Control through timers or remote lighting
  2. Flooring
    1. Remove area rugs that can cause tripping hazards
    2. Clean up spills immediately
  3. Kitchen
    1. Store items within easy reach to prevent the use of step stools
  4. Bathroom
    1. Install grab bars or toilet surround
    2. Insist on a shower chair and a hand-held shower head
    3. Use no-slip pads in the tub and outside the tub
  5. Bedroom
    1. Add bed rails to prevent falling and to help with climbing in and out of bed
    2. Lower closet rods for easier accessibility

MEDIUM PROJECTS:

  1. Lighting
    1. Replace regular light switches with rocker-panel style switches
    2. Install motion sensor lighting instead of constantly leaving nightlights on
    3. Add task lighting under cabinets and near beds
  2. Flooring
    1. Fix uneven flooring and thresholds to minimize tripping hazards
    2. Install ramps instead of stairs
  3. Kitchen
    1. Modify cabinets and drawers to be soft-closing to help arthritic hands
    2. Add pull-out shelving or drawers to lower cabinets
  4. Bathroom
    1. Install grab bars to provide secure handholds near the toilet, shower, and tub
    2. Replace the toilet with a raised toilet
    3. Lower the vanity or mirror so seniors do not have to stand while performing basic hygiene tasks
  5. Bedroom
    1. Install handholds for assistance in getting in and out of the bed
    2. Adjust the height of the bed

LARGE RENOVATIONS:

  1. Flooring
    1. Replace slippery floors or older surfaces that have cracks
    2. Fill in sunken living rooms and level the floor
  2. Kitchen
    1. For wheelchair accessibility, lower the counters or commonly used small appliances
  3. Bathrooms
    1. Remove some features to increase floor space to accommodate wheelchairs
    2. Replace the tub with a walk-in version
  4. Stairways
    1. Install a chair lift or elevator if stairs are not avoidable
    2. Move the senior or remodel so he/she has a first-floor bedroom
  5. Doorways
    1. Enlarge doorways for easier wheelchair accessibility
    2. Make sure the door opens at least 90 degrees and can be properly secured at wheelchair height

Whatever stage you find yourself in as a senior living alone or an adult child providing additional caregiving to your parent, walk through the home and assess the needs for your loved you. Budget and plan so that safe, independent living may remain possible for an extended period.

Source: Big Rentz