As people age, cognitive and visual function often decrease. In addition, mobility issues can arise, raising the risk for accidents or injuries. Fortunately, there are several measures you can employ to promote your aging loved one’s safety at home.
Wipe Up Spills Quickly
Slip and fall-related injuries are very common among the elderly population. However, many of these accidents can be prevented when spills are quickly wiped up from the floor. In addition to wiping up spills, discourage your loved one from walking on a freshly washed floor until it has thoroughly dried. Wearing nonslip rubber-soled shoes may also keep your loved one steady in the event contact is made with a slippery spot.
Taking precautions can increase safety for seniors both inside and outside the home. Aging adults who need help around the house, transportation to medical appointments and social events, and assistance with exercise can benefit from having an in-home caregiver. Montgomery seniors can enjoy greater independence and receive regular mental and social stimulation when relying on a trusted professional who is expertly trained in various aspects of senior care.
Even Out Surfaces
Transition strips should be installed where wall-to-wall carpeting meets a bare floor. These strips can prevent tripping over the sudden height increase and help your loved one feel more secure. Gently remind your loved one to pick up his or her feet when walking and avoid dragging his or her feet whenever possible. Transition strips can be purchased at your local home improvement center, hardware store, or carpet store. If you are unable to install them yourself, contact a reputable handyman.
Keep Hazardous Materials Out of Reach
Certain cleaning chemicals may look like fruit juices or soft drinks to a person who has cognitive deficits. Yellow lemon-scented floor cleaners may resemble lemonade, while orange-scented cleaners maybe mistaken for orange juice. Hazardous materials such as these, as well as medications, laundry detergents, liquid adhesives, and painting supplies, should be safely stored where your loved one cannot access them. If your loved one accidentally ingests a chemical or medication, seek emergency medical care as soon as possible. While inducing vomiting can clear the stomach of the offending chemical, it should not be initiated if the ingested substance was caustic or irritating, as this could damage the delicate tissues of the esophagus and throat.
Hiring a professional caregiver is another way to increase your loved one’s safety in the home. Montgomery home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
Keep the Home Well-Lit
Your loved one’s home should always be well-lit, even if the lights have to remain on all day and night. When the sun goes down, elderly people sometimes become confused and disoriented to their surroundings. Having adequate lighting around the home can prevent fear and apprehension and help your loved one see where he or she is going. If having bright lights on is disruptive to your loved one’s sleep, make sure nightlights are placed in hallways and bathrooms. It might also help to replace harsh fluorescent lights with softer light bulbs to cut down on glare and eye irritation.
Safety-proofing an aging loved one’s home while managing other caregiving duties can be challenging. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Montgomery, AL, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity. To schedule a free in-home consultation, give us a call at (334) 593-3988 today.