If you have an elderly parent at home, one of the best things you can do for them is to make sure that your home is safe. When we fall as kids, we heal quickly and just have crazy stories to tell the rest of our lives. But as we get older, the healing process slows down, and we break a lot easier. Here are some ways that you can help prevent falling at home with your elderly parents.
Keep It Clean
If you have children, make sure to help them keep a habit of picking up their toys. Clothes on the floor should go in hampers, and any random items around the house should be kept put away. Be sure to pay close attention to areas that aren’t big open spaces like hallways, stairs, and doorways because the smaller space they have to walk, the easier it will be to trip over things on the floor.
Did your cat pull up your carpet and you just haven’t gotten around to making repairs? Now is the time to do it. Floorboards that are sticking up or broken steps to get into the front door can all contribute to a nasty fall.
Fancy rugs look nice, but if they are easily flipped over in the corners or curled up, they can create a hazard. Loose chords from your electronics in walkways is also a bad idea, but using tape to cover these areas or making rugs stick to the ground can prove to be a safer alternative.
Get your wrench out because you want your house full of rails. On the stairs, if they aren’t already, in the bathtub and shower, in front of or beside the toilet, and even in their bedroom or kitchen. Railways make it easier to maneuver around the house, so installing them in areas they frequent most may be able to help prevent falls.
Good lighting will make you feel better, and it makes it easier to see where you are going when your sight isn’t as good as it used to be. In the bedroom, making sure that the light near the bed is easy to reach can make it easier for them when they need to get up in the middle of the night. At the front door, if they come home late for any reason, make sure the front area is well lit. Having the area well lit can help your elderly loved ones see a hazard before it’s too late.
Make Areas Non-Slip
Places like in the bathtub or shower, in front of the toilet, and in front of any sinks are more likely to be fall hazards than on the carpet in front of the TV. Anywhere that slipping might be an issue, you should put a rubber matt or decal to help keep your loved ones from falling.
First Floor VIP
If you are moving into a house to bring in your parents, try to find one that can give them a room on the first floor. Eliminating stairs entirely can be a huge help. This can also help because they may be fatigued or tired and find that they avoid going to their room because it is so much work.
When it is time to bake for the holidays, try moving all of the kitchen supplies that they would use in places that are easier to reach. If they use electronic can openers, coffee pots, or toasters, try leaving them on the counter for them or, if you need to put them away, put them in cabinets that make them within arms reach. Towels, toilet paper, books, and other things that they may need throughout the day should be put away in places that they won't need a step stool and they won't need to get too far down to the ground to retrieve.
If you ever have to leave your loved one alone, consider getting something that can call you or paramedics with the push of a button, so they aren’t left alone in your house for hours laying on the ground. You can also talk to them, ask them what you can do to make their lives more comfortable as you take care of them. If they have fallen and are in pain, using CBD topicals on the areas that hurt may be able to help soothe them. You took on a big responsibility, and it can become tiresome at times, but this is a very selfless and fantastic thing you are doing for your elderly parents.
Do you have your parents staying with you? What are some tips and tricks you have that keep your house safe from falls? Leave your suggestions in the comment section below!