Understanding Home Adaptations for Seniors

Understanding Home Adaptations for Seniors

As we age, our bodies slow down and don’t always function how we want them to. It’s an inevitable part of life, but that doesn’t make these changes any easier to deal with. This is why it’s important to approach adapting the home of an elderly loved one with sensitivity and understanding. They might be resistant at first, but for your peace of mind and their safety, these are necessary adjustments. However, first, you need to understand what their needs are and how to get the best of these home adaptations.

Mobility

A common issue with aging is that you might lose your mobility. If your elderly family member lives in a bungalow, they will need fewer adjustments to be able to get around the space. However, since this isn’t always the case, you might need to install a stairlift to help them get up and down the stairs. Alternatively, if the stairway isn’t wide enough to accommodate a stairlift, you could instead have a small elevator put into the house. Terry Lifts offer domestic elevators that can be installed almost anywhere in your home for improved access to the upper floors.

Hygiene

Seniors deserve to live with dignity; being able to clean themselves regularly is a crucial element of self-esteem. To help them keep some independence, think about how you can adjust the bathroom to make it safer for them to take a shower or go to the toilet on their own. Support bars are commonly used for this purpose. If they are wheelchair users, you need to make sure there is enough space for the chair in the bathroom, too. There are special seats you can have installed in the shower and bath to help them get up and down more easily. Alternatively, consider having a large walk-in shower built.

Emergency Alarms

If they live alone, it’s important that they are able to contact you or emergency services quickly should they fall or have an accident. If they are unable to call for help, this could have devastating effects both physically and mentally, as they could be left alone for hours. There are personal alarms they can have on them at all times, which are very effective. It might be worth having other alarm cords or buttons placed around the house, too.

Lowering Kitchen Worktops

Again, if your elderly relative is a wheelchair user, they might not be able to reach the kitchen worktops with ease. In order to encourage independent living where possible, lowering these worktops is advisable. They should be able to make themselves a cup of coffee if they want to, or prepare themselves meals throughout the day. If these adaptations aren’t made, it could lead to frustration and even injuries due to inadequate access to these food prep areas.

It’s not easy getting older, and it can be difficult for seniors to face the prospect of having to leave their long-term home due to changes in their physical abilities. Where possible, it’s always better to make adaptations to their current home, but it’s important these are done properly and with understanding.

 

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