Removing Safety Hazards for Seniors at Home | Executive Care of Southern Ocean
Many older adults want to live in the comfort of home as they age. But without the right safety precautions, that can be difficult and even dangerous.
Fortunately, by finding and mitigating safety hazards in your loved one’s home, you can ensure a safe home environment.
Looking for Safety Hazards
Start by searching for areas of the home that could pose a safety hazard. Focus your safety hazard search on the bathroom, bedroom and kitchen. These are areas that can often contain the highest risk for falls and fires— two very serious safety hazards for seniors.
One in four adults over age 65 suffer from falls each year, one of the greatest safety and health risks for seniors. To help eliminate the risk of falls for your aging loved one, you can do the following:
- Get rid of throw rugs
- Make sure laundry facilities are on the first floor
- Remove wheels on chairs
- Keep steps clear of clutter
- Apply non-slip wax to floors
- Add a hall railing
- Add a raised toilet and grab bars
- Use rubber-backed bath mats
- Repair loose carpeting or raised areas of flooring
Check electrical cords to be sure they are in good working condition and are undamaged. Make sure your loved one doesn’t have too many electric cords plugged into one socket or extension cord, and take the time to evaluate appliances and other electrical items in the home.
Make sure the batteries in the smoke detector are being changed and tested regularly. Be sure to review ways your loved will be able to exit the home in case of a fire, making sure there are at least two ways to get out.
Check to make sure the hot water heater thermostat is adjusted so it stays at or under 120 degrees. You may also purchase anti-scalding devices to install in sinks, tubs and showers that will recognize when the water is too hot and stop the flow.
Quick and Easy Safety Tips
Keeping your loved one prepared for many possible scenarios can help ensure his or her safety.
Is there a list of emergency numbers kept by each phone and added to the contact list in a cell phone? Those numbers should include:
- Poison Control: 1-800-222-1222
- Family members or friends to call in case of emergency
- Healthcare provider’s office
Emergency responders will be able to find your love one’s home easier if his or her home address is clearly visible from the street. You can install larger house numbers in metal or stickers to make them more visible and could also spray paint the house numbers on the street curb.
There can be many safety concerns for seniors living alone at home, but fortunately, we’re here to help address some of those concerns. Executive Care of Southern Ocean provides a full range of in-home care services that can make life easier and safer for your aging loved one.