Most of us spend the majority of our time in our own homes, which makes it an ideal place to stay safe. However, as we age there are a number of home safety considerations that need to be taken into account. Seniors do not just face additional risks from falling and other medical conditions; it may also take them more time to recover from any accidents or injuries. That’s why it’s important for older adults to take precautions when living in their own home and address potential risks beforehand. These home safety tips for seniors will help keep you safe in your own house.
Always Have a Working Phone
If you fall and can’t get up, a reliable phone that can be easily accessed is a vital lifeline. If you have a cordless phone, make sure that its base is on a table or surface that you can easily reach. If you have a landline phone, make sure that you remember to keep spare batteries on hand in case of power outages. It is also a good idea to keep a list of emergency phone numbers close by, such as 9-1-1, your doctor’s office, and the phone numbers of family members and close friends.
Move items to a lower shelf in your kitchen cabinets
Kitchen cabinets are a major risk for seniors. Items placed on the top shelf may be out of reach for many people, while those on the lower shelf are easily accessible. However, it is important to remember that a lower shelf may be out of reach for many people with limited mobility. It’s also a good idea to remove anything that could fall and cause injury, such as bowls and pots. It’s important to remember that you should always put items away after using them. Leaving dirty dishes in the sink or stacked on the counter can be dangerous for those who may have a hard time bending down to put them away. If you have trouble reaching items in the back of your cabinets, it may be time to hire a contractor to put in a lower set of cabinets.
If you live in a multi-story house, it is important to install stairway handrails and use them each time you walk up or down the stairs. It isn’t just for those with a disability; any person who may have trouble with balance, walking, or simply carrying items should use handrails. It is also a good idea to place a non-slip mat at the top and bottom of the stairs to prevent falls. Installing motion lights in your stairwell will help you make your way up and down the stairs safely at night. Placing bright colored stair tape at the edge of each stair will help you see where each stairs ends, which can prevent tripping hazards as well. If you have a particular medical condition, such as arthritis or balance issues, that may increase the risk of falling on the stairs, you may want to consider moving to a ground-level house.
Install Motion Sensors
One of the most effective ways of increasing home safety is with some basic technology. Motion sensors can be used to turn lights on and off, warn you if you leave something out, or alert you if someone is in the house. If you are worried about the lights being left on in different areas of your home, motion sensors work very well for doing this. There are many options for motion sensors, so it’s important to find a brand and model that works best for you and your home. If you are worried about people being in your home without your knowledge, a motion sensor can also be used to trigger an alarm. It’s also a good idea to have a home security system installed, especially if you live alone. While many home security companies offer different types of monitoring, it is important to find out what each one offers so that you can select the best one for you and your budget.
Add Additional Lighting
One of the easiest ways to make your home safer is to add additional lighting. This can be done in a number of ways, such as installing new light fixtures, adding table lamps, or placing a lamp next to your favorite chair or reading area. This is a great way to create a safer environment while also adding a touch of comfort to your home. It’s also a good idea to replace any light bulbs or fixtures that use incandescent bulbs with those that use LED bulbs. LED bulbs are more energy efficient and last longer than incandescent bulbs.
Lock Doors and Windows
Keeping doors and windows locked is an important part of home safety for anyone. Make sure that all doors and windows have good locks to prevent unwanted guests from entering. If you have sliding glass doors or windows, it’s a good idea to block them off with a grille to prevent them from being used as an entry point. If you find that you keep forgetting to lock the doors, it may be helpful to place a lock box near the door so that you can remember to do so before leaving the house. You may also want to keep extra keys with trusted friends or family members so that they can keep an eye on your home while you are away.
Install Grab Bars in the Shower and Bathtub
If you are worried that you may slip or fall while getting in or out of the shower or bathtub, it’s a good idea to install grab bars in these areas. It’s also a good idea to use a non-slip mat in the shower or on the floor of the bathtub to help prevent falls. If you have limited mobility, you may also want to invest in a shower chair or stool for additional support. If you have a friend or family member who is a good contractor, it may be helpful to ask them if they can install grab bars in your bathroom and near the bathtub or shower. This can be a great way to ensure that they are installed properly and will be beneficial to you if you need assistance.
De-clutter the home
Cluttered homes can be a major source of stress, making it difficult to relax. While it can be hard to part with items you have collected over the years, it’s important to remember that less is more when it comes to home safety. This can be especially important for those who have vision issues or use a walker or wheelchair. It’s also a good idea to get rid of items that could be dangerous, such as candles or extension cords. If you have trouble seeing clutter, it may also be helpful to hire a professional organizer to help get your home in order. While it may seem like a daunting task, keeping your home clean and organized is important for everyone, especially seniors. It can help reduce stress, improve your mood, and allow you to relax. It’s also a good idea to schedule regular cleanings to help you keep up with the housework.
Tape down area rugs
It’s a good idea to place area rugs throughout your home; they can add style and warmth to any room. However, if you have a rug that has loops, it can be a trip hazard. It’s important to place a rug pad underneath the rug to help prevent it from moving around and becoming a tripping hazard. If you have a rug with loops, it’s also a good idea to tape down the loose ends so that they don’t become tangled around feet or toes. This can be helpful for anyone who may be prone to tripping, such as children or seniors.