As we age, our bodies begin to slow down, and we may not be capable of doing what we once were. It can become challenging to walk upstairs, and our eyesight can begin to deteriorate. This means you may have to make some alterations to your home to ensure your safety. But how exactly can you get started? And what are the main risks?
Below we are going to talk about eight changes you should make to your house as you get older.
Want to learn more? Then keep on reading.
Install a medical alert system.
Most home security systems will have surveillance and alarms, but not all of them will have the ability to alert others. A medical alert system is designed for vulnerable family members who are at increased risk of falls. Some are worn on the body, some use wireless voice technology, and others even come with location tracking. There are certainly something that you should look into getting, especially if you have had previous injuries.
Upgrade your mattress.
Another thing you should change as you get older is your mattress. In order to get a good night’s sleep, there is a high chance that you need something that is more supportive. This will help remove pressure and keep your spine in a neutral position.
Check out this great guide for buying a mattress online to get started. By asking yourself the right questions, you can find something that suits your sleeping style and budget.
Remove potential fall hazards.
As mentioned above, as you age, you put yourself at risk of falls. Make sure that you have a clear pathway throughout your home and pick up any clutter that may be taking up unnecessary space. You also want to make sure that any rugs are secured underneath the furniture. They are one of the biggest causes of accidents and can lead to severe injuries.
Change your handles and fixtures.
While your current doorknobs and handles might be ok for you now, they could cause you trouble in the future. As your hands stiffen, you want something that can be easily gripped and pulled. Avoid anything that is thin, narrow, small, and contains harsh angles. Instead, opt for those that are larger (at least 3 inches wide), round and ergonomic in design. It’s a simple thing that can make a big difference.
Consider shower and bathtub modifications.
Another one of the most hazardous areas in the house for the elderly is the bathroom. Without taking the proper precautions, it’s very easy to slip, especially after using the bath or shower. Luckily, there are a few different modifications you can consider making, some of which include:
- Installing a walk-in tub.
- Adding a shower bench.
- Cushioning sharp edges with adhesive guards.
- Placing slip-proof mats and stickers on the floor.
- Ensuring there is proper drainage.
You can find more tips to keep your bathroom safe here.
Move important areas downstairs.
As you get older, you want to avoid stairs as much as possible. However, not everyone can afford to move house. Instead, try and relocate any important areas you use downstairs, such as your bedroom and office. This way, you won’t need to travel to the upper part of the house as often.
Install handrails and grab bars.
Certainly, the easiest and most affordable way to increase your safety as you age is to install handrails and grab bars. These can be secured easily next to your bed, in the bathroom, or even near the front door. Just make sure you look for something that is ADA compliant. This way, you know that it is of good quality and can withstand a decent amount of pressure.
Add more lighting throughout the home.
Finally, the last change to make to your home as you age is to install more lighting. Night lights can be placed around the house to make it easier to get to the bathroom, and automatic outdoor lighting can help ensure that you get inside your home safely.
It’s not just to prevent accidents either. A well-lit home can deter away criminals from your property by making it less of a target.
And that’s it! By following the above, you can “age in place” while still enjoying and living in your beautiful home. While it might take a little bit of getting used to at first, you can rest assured knowing that you will be safe.