Safety Tips: Home Safety For Seniors
Home Safety Tips for Older Adults
Independent living is becoming more common among older adults which makes it all the more imperative to take safety precautions to ensure your loved one can stay at home in a safe environment.
Falling, burns, and surprisingly poisonings are among the most common accidents involving older adults. Here are some tips to consider if you are a senior living alone or have a loved one who lives independently.
Tips to Prevent Falls
Remove rugs or tape them down. These can be a trip hazard for older adults who have difficulty walking.
Wear non-slip shoes. If you have smooth or slippery floors wearing shoes with rubber bottoms can prevent tripping and sliding.
Use a cane or walker to get around instead of using the walls or furniture. Another option is to install rails or banisters around your home to help with getting around especially when going up and down the stairs.
Carry an alarm with you so you can call for assistance if you have fallen. Yes if the “Help I have fallen and can’t get up” commercial just popped into your head that’s what I am talking about, doesn’t have to be that exact device, but something similar.
Make sure objects aren’t sticking, such as shoes on a shoe rack, objects on a bookcase, etc.
Make sure rooms are well-lit. If you get up in the middle of the night, have motion-detected night lights in the hallways to make it easier to see.
Tips to Prevent Bathroom Hazards
Older adults can be more sensitive to temperature. If you can, preset your water heater thermostat to prevent scalding. Recommend no higher than 120°F.
Have rails installed in the shower or have a chair to make showering easier.
Have rails installed by the toilet to make getting up and down easier and safer.
The use of rubber mats in the bathtub can prevent accidental slipping.
Tips to Prevent Poisoning
Make sure there is a carbon monoxide detector near all bedrooms or in every room if you want to be extra cautious.
Keep all medications in their original container to prevent confusion on which medication is what.
If you have a hard time reading the label on the medication bottle, you can ask your pharmacist to print the label in a larger font to make it easier to read.
Don’t mix cleaning products. Open the windows when using cleaning products to allow air circulation so you are not inhaling the fumes or smelling the chemicals.
Tips to Make Your Home Safe
Have a fire extinguisher easily accessible on every floor.
Remove cords from walking areas.
Avoid candles to prevent accidental burns or prevent fire hazards.
Make sure all furniture, floorboards, and stairs are sturdy.
Never stand on a ladder or chair. Use a small step stool instead or keep a handy grabber tool around to reach high-up things.