1. Secure rugs to prevent slips, trips, and falls. It is important to use only rugs with non-slip backing. Edges should not curl. Tripping on a rug is one of the major health hazards for Seniors. A serious fall could be life-changing.
  2. Install handrails on both sides of stairwells. As people age balance becomes an issue. Navigating up and down stairs every day could be hazardous. Handrails on both sides of the stairwell offer more stability when walking up and down steps.
  3. Place grab bars in the bathroom. Bathrooms present many risks for the elderly, particularly if there is no walk-in shower. Grab bars make it easier and safer to get in and out of a tub. Having a grab bar by the toilet eases getting up and down. They are essential when muscles are stiff, and balance is a problem.
  4. Have good lighting in strategic areas. Dark corners, entryways, and stairwells should be well-lit. Good lighting throughout all of the home is important. Missing a step and falling due to poor lighting causes numerous home accidents.
  5. Use a GPS medical alert call system. When alone having a medical alert system is essential. Many Seniors worry there will be no one to help should they fall or have an emergency and are unable to reach the phone. Life alerts save lives.
  6. Install and test smoke detectors. Batteries on smoke detectors need to be changed annually. Do not wait until batteries die to install new ones. It is useful to change batteries every year on a birthday, daylight savings date or another special date. Put the chosen date on your calendar as an annual reminder.
  7. Label and store medication containers properly. Medications become confusing if there are several pills to take during the day or at regular meals. Purchase a weekly pill box. There are morning and evening boxes or those with rows of days for 3-4 times daily. A pharmacy may be able to bubble pack prescriptions for their clients. Whatever method is chosen, be sure containers are clearly labeled and stored properly. Posting a medication list on the fridge is beneficial to the EMTs or paramedics who are first to arrive in an emergency.
  8. Use hand-held grabbers to reach items. Although it is tempting to climb onto a chair to reach objects on a high shelf or refrigerator top, it is also a hazard. Hand grabber tools eliminate the temptation to be overconfident and take a risk. Grabbers are simple tools making life-saving differences.
  9. Place a non-skid bathroom mat in the tub or shower. Studies show most accidents occur in the bathroom. A non-skid bathroom mat complements the safety of grab bars. Non-skid bathmats are available for inside and outside tubs or showers. If a mat is slippery when wet dispose of it and replace with a non-skid mat.
  10. Create a support system to check on loved ones regularly. Living alone has its advantages but there are numerous disadvantages. Isolation, loneliness, greater risk for depression and higher rates of anxiety are only a few of the issues presented with living alone. Having a healthy support system in place is crucial including people checking in on you regularly

Safety is vital for everyone, especially Seniors. To be safe, plan ahead. Know your options. Bridge to Better Living provides services to make your golden years brighter. We believe in a safe and secure quality of life. Contact BBL now for information on our services and resources.