Start With A Conversation
Home safety for seniors starts with a simple conversation. Basic home care can help to make a home what it should be, a comfortable place to live and enjoy life. Adult children are generally the best ones to bring up the subject of home safety. Most seniors feel they can handle their own home care. While this may be true for the most part, people of all ages sometimes overlook things that help prevent a serious injury or worse.
Unfortunately, as we age it is not as easy to recover from an injury or fall and seniors at home do face certain hazards. Some of these may be avoided. When having a conversation with seniors about safety in the home it is best to remain calm and explain that efforts to keep a home safe will be beneficial not only for them, but for those who love them as well.
Have A Home Inspection
Take a walk through the home and take note of any potential hazards. Everything does not need to be corrected at once, but it does help to be aware of potential risks in the home. Once potential risks are identified, sit down and discuss options to correct these issues and make the home a safer environment for all. Here are some main areas to look at when pinpointing potential safety issues at a senior’s home.
â€¢ Place lights at the top and bottom of stairs
â€¢ Tape rugs to the floor to preventing slipping or falling or don’t use rugs if possible
â€¢ Keep stairs clear of clutter
â€¢ Use nightlights in the hallway, bedroom and bathroom
â€¢ Install grab bars in the shower/bath
â€¢ Clean up spills immediately
â€¢ Keep stairs clear
â€¢ Paint the bottom of a basement step to make it easier to see to avoid missing a step
â€¢ Keep walkways/steps to the home free of snow and ice in the winter and check for lose bricks, stones or cement
â€¢ Make sure household products or chemicals are in a secure container and clearly labeled
â€¢ If poison is accidentally ingested, call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 or call 911
â€¢ Install carbon monoxide detectors
â€¢ Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen/dining area
â€¢ Don’t wear loose fitting clothing while cooking
â€¢ Use oven mitts
â€¢ If grilling, stay by the grill while cooking
â€¢ Turn pot/pan handles inward so they can’t be easily knocked over
â€¢ Keep hot drinks away from the edge of tables/counters
â€¢ Adjust the hot water tank so the water will not get to a level that is dangerously hot
Prescription medication can help a senior stay healthy and live a vital, active life. However, some precautions should be taken to make sure all medications are safely used and stored.
â€¢ Keep medications in the same general area
â€¢ If having grandchildren over, make sure medications are in a place not easily accessed or in a location that can be temporarily locked
â€¢ Check expiration dates on a regular basis, throw away old/unused medications