Senior Living For the More Independent Senior #1
4 Steps You Should Take When Modifying Your Home for a Senior
When an aging parent or relative is moving into your home, the resulting transition can feel chaotic for everyone involved. You may already be dealing with the emotional aspects of this major life change, but you have to be sure you don’t neglect the necessary home elements that can help your loved one feel safe and welcome. To make it easier to prepare your home for an elderly family member, here are some basic steps you should take.
Reduce Fall Risks in the Bathrooms
Before a senior loved one comes to live in your home, you want to make sure you can offer a safe environment. For older adults, that usually means taking measures to prevent dangerous falls, especially in the bathroom. That’s why it may be prudent for homeowners to hire an experienced bathroom designer who can customize any needed upgrades. In Sacramento, HomeAdvisor estimates bathroom design services to cost anywhere between $900 to $4,433, on average. And though you might still need to hire a contractor to complete major renovations, a bathroom designer can incorporate accessibility upgrades that will be both helpful and stylish, like a walk-in shower or grab bars around the toilet.
Modify Entryways for Safety and Accessibility
The entryway is another part of the home that presents senior fall risks. Senior falls account for the majority of emergency room visits and serious injuries among the elderly. Falls are so prevalent and perilous that in the time it takes for you to read this article, 30 seniors have likely been treated in an emergency room for a fall-related injury. So take the steps needed to ensure safety for your senior when entering and exiting your home. This may include adding railing around your actual steps, to provide additional support, but you should also secure any rugs or mats you have in this area. You can use non-skid rug pads to prevent slips or ditch those entryway rugs and mats altogether.
Add Some Tech for Home Automation and Security
You may think the only use for smart home tech is to add convenience for younger adults, but in reality smart home technology can provide an enormous amount of help for seniors and their caregivers. For example, smart lighting that adjusts automatically is another simple way to prevent an aging parent from experiencing a fall. And if you anticipate worrying about your loved one’s safety while you are away from home, you may also want to invest in a security camera system. Installing a video system you can monitor from afar can be very helpful for family caregivers, especially when a loved one has Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Keep Seniors Comfortable With Relaxing Home Features
Transitioning a senior parent into living with family can be a challenge. On one hand, your loved one is likely to feel cared for by this thoughtful gesture. On the other hand, she may also feel anxious about uprooting her life and losing a sense of independence. To ease any stresses, try to remain patient and understanding, but also try to create a relaxing environment. Start in your loved one’s bedroom with touches that enhance sleep. A comfortable bedroom can help your loved one get better rest during this transition, but also think about making self-care easier for you both. Self-care can help your older family members settle into a new environment but it can also be crucial for family caregivers.
Living with a loved one can help seniors feel more secure and less alone, but it can take a while for everyone to settle into this major lifestyle change. By making modifications to your home for accessibility, safety and comfort, you can at least ease some stress and help you both feel more at home with this new arrangement.