Housing an elderly relative, whether it’s your parents or grandparents, isn’t as unpopular an idea as it used to be. In the past decade, more and more retirees have been invited by their relations to stay over at their homes both temporarily and permanently. However, one’s age does affect movement, skills, and capacities. That being said, you will need to outfit and upgrade your home to be able to keep your elderly relative comfortable and content while staying with you. Here are just a few essential modifications that you can start with:
This is one of the places in your house that needs immediate attention before your elderly relative’s arrival. With stronger possibilities of accidents happening in this room, you will require a bit of renovation to make it senior-safe. Choose from the many models of tubs for the elderly and have it installed properly.
Place sturdy handlebars in strategic parts of the bathroom and reposition electric switches and sockets to a more comfortable height, about waist or chest high. Replace taps and doorknobs with elderly-friendly models. Finally, purchase skid-proof mats and rugs and position them where they’re needed. It would also help to install security cameras. Just make sure that they’re installed in spots that won’t cause your elderly relative to feel awkward or uncomfortable.
If your elderly relative is still active and mobile enough to walk briskly around the house, there will not be that much to change in their bedroom. However, they might not admit to some of their physical issues and health problems, and these will affect their regular daily activities. Add automatic lights with voice control if you can.
Find and label places for small items such as the remote control and keys. Change your windows’ locks to more senior-friendly versions. Consider their ailments when you choose their room’s flooring. If they have asthma or other respiratory illnesses, then you should avoid carpets and stick to wooden or vinyl tiles. Just make sure that they have enough traction and aren’t too slippery.
Another place that elderly people would want to frequent is the kitchen since many of them would like to prepare meals for the other family members. Discouraging them from doing so can limit their connection with the family and affect their state of emotions while staying with you. Instead, encourage them to cook, but keep your kitchen clean and clutter-free to avoid any accidents.
To reduce the chances of slipping and falling, make sure that everyone cleans up their spills and messes. Transfer spices, cooking utensils, and ingredients to a more manageable height. Reserve your high shelves and storage for items that your seniors hardly use when cooking.
There are other areas in your house that will be frequented by your elderly loved one, but you can easily use the same suggestions for their bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen with a bit of adjustment. As a rule, you will need to rearrange your home’s furniture and appliances to allow your elderly loved one more room to move about without getting hurt. This goes double if they’re using a wheelchair. But all in all, the love that they can bring to your family and the joy you can give them during their golden years are all worth the extra effort, money, and time.