The Importance of a Home Safety Checklist
Home safety for Seniors increases in importance as a person ages. Minor everyday inconveniences now become hazards. Over 14 million Seniors 65 and older are treated in emergency rooms due to injuries caused by unsafe conditions. Many emergency room cases are due to falling and statistically 60 percent of those dying from a fall are aged 75 or older. Many of these falls could have been prevented with a few simple improvements around the home.
The Senior Home Safety Checklist
Working Fire Alarms
Strategically placed fire alarms are important in every home, especially in homes of Seniors. According to FEMA and the U.S. Fire Administration Seniors are 3 times more likely to perish in a fire. Have your home assessed for fire safety and suggestions as to where fire alarms would be most effective.
Most serious injuries occur in the bathroom. Falling in the shower, getting out of the bathtub and wet slippery floors pose problems. Use non-slip pads on these surfaces. Add grab bars by the toilet and bathtub. Install plastic or safety glass shower doors. Use sturdy and secure towel bars if there is any chance they would be used for stability. Dispose of throw rugs and use only a low pile carpet.
Install railings at the proper height. Keep stairs free of items such as books, shoes and toys. Lighting on the stairs is essential. If carpeted, it needs to be in good condition and not frayed. Install treading or a non-slip surface on bare stairs.
Safety in the Kitchen
Have a working fire extinguisher and know how to operate it. Keep the stove clear of flammable items. Even electrical stoves are capable of hosting a fire. Grease spills need to be cleaned immediately. Keep all electrical cords away from wet areas, counter edges and the stove.
Remove throw rugs in the home. Frayed edges and worn spots in rugs are common tripping hazards.
Have adequate and accessible lighting in all areas. Place light switches near the door and always walk into a well-lit room rather than walk through the dark.
Hide electrical and phone cords. Secure all cords; don’t tuck them under rugs.
Safe Traffic Areas and Walkways
Clear all walkways. Be proactive in decluttering where traffic is highest.
Use sturdy furniture as soft cushy furniture is difficult to get in and out of for Seniors. Sidearms help when transferring from a sitting position. Lift chair costs are partially covered by insurance if there is a medical need.
As you check off things to be mindful of, you will most likely notice other concerns. Take time to make a list of possible problems and begin addressing them. The safety of your home or the home of your loved one is a priority. Putting it off increases the prospect of becoming an injury statistic.
Schedule A Consultation
Bridge for Better Living is able to assist you in finding the resources needed to ensure you are living in a safe environment. Contact us for information and guidance regarding Senior Living. Our consultations are at no cost ever to the client.