According to a study done by the Federal Housing Administration, just under 90% of people approaching retirement want to stay in their homes as they age. However, as we age, daily tasks that were once performed without any thought can become difficult to accomplish and even dangerous. The risk of tripping increases while mobility decreases as we get older. Falling is the leading cause of death from injury among people aged 65 and older. It is important to make sure your home is safe and accessible for seniors.
Boom Health has put together a list of 10 safety tips that families can follow to help prevent injuries, reduce the risk of falls, and assist in the independence of you or your loved ones.
1. Install sturdy stair railings. Stairs can become more difficult to climb as individuals age. Stair railings allow for a smooth movement from one floor to another while also helping to prevent seniors from falling down a flight of stairs, which can cause life-threatening consequences.
2. Place commonly used appliances within reach. This is so seniors do not have to struggle to reach things that are either too high or too low.
3. Use grab bars in the bathroom and shower. Grabs bars offer extra support for seniors in wet and slippery locations.
4. Purchase a lift chair. Since seniors have a harder time sitting down than the rest of us, lift chairs can reduce the stress on senior’s knees. They provide excellent stability when fully elevated and are super comfortable.
5. Place non-slip mats in the shower. This reduces the likelihood of slipping. Wood, vinyl, or tile floors with lots of grout are recommended to prevent slipping.
6. Adjust the water heater to prevent scalding. The optimal temperature for shower or bath water is 112 degrees Fahrenheit.
7. Remove trip hazards. The presence of extension cords, small rugs, and clutter present a risk of falling.
8. Cover the corners of tables and counters. This can be done with tape and foam or corner covers can be purchased. Doing this can help prevent serious injury in the event of a fall.
9. Make sure there is adequate lighting. This is especially important near the stairs. Not having enough lighting can be a concern for seniors at night or early in the morning.
10. Verify that all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide monitors are in good working order. Have extra batteries at home so the old ones can be readily replaced if they die.
For more tips on home safety, check out Omni Home Ideas’ Ultimate Home Safety Checklist.
The Boom Health app provides a variety of medical equipment that can be purchased or rented. Some of these items include walkers, wheelchairs, scooters, and hospital beds. Check us out on the App Store or Google Play Store to get started in the care of your loved one.