Deciding to bring in your elderly parent to live with you can be a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be if you follow these simple tips for preparing your home for when they move in.
1. Make sure the bathroom is easy for them to use
Your elderly parent will need an easy-to-use bathroom in order to reduce their risk of falls, even more so for those with dementia. Make sure you have grab bars installed by a professional and that any ledge they might use to help themselves up is sturdy and stable enough for them to hold onto.
Other bathroom alterations to consider making for your elderly parent include:
-Installing a walk in tub
-Adding non-slip flooring to avoid falls on wet surfaces
-Installing additional lighting by the bathtub and sink
2. Keep furniture in living areas at an appropriate height for your elderly parent
Furniture that is too high will make it hard for them to reach it, and furniture that is too low could cause them to trip over it. Make sure sofas and chairs have short legs so they don’t catch a foot or a cane under the edge.
You should also make sure things like lamps that you put on end tables are at a height that your elderly parent can easily reach when they get up in the middle of the night.
3. Install grab bars or other safety devices to help with balance and stability
Installing grab bars in your bath, shower, and around the toilet can be a great way to give your elderly parents support and prevent them from falling. Having stable handrails along stairs and railings at doorways will also prevent them from tripping downstairs or when they walk through doorways.
Additional safety devices to consider include:
-Removable benches in the shower for easy sit-down and stand up
-Nonslip flooring or rugs that will not slide when stepped on
4. Remove throw rugs from the floor so that your parent can walk without tripping
Make sure there aren’t any loose or frayed rugs in your elderly parent’s walkway so they aren’t at risk of slipping and falling when you add new ones.
5. Add lighting throughout the house so it’s easier for them to see when they get up during the night
Your elderly parent’s room should be well lit with lamps on both nightstands if possible, but you can also install additional overhead lighting in hallways and staircases to reduce their risk of falling while moving about at night.
6. Include plenty of drawer space in bedrooms, kitchens, and bathrooms to help keep things organized
Having enough drawer space will allow your elderly parent to have a designated place for everything they’ll need during the day so they don’t leave it lying around on tabletops or dressers where they risk tripping over it.
By following these simple tips when preparing your home for your elderly parent to move in, you can make sure they’ll be safe during their time with you.
Plus, it’ll be a less stressful experience for them and for you by having their living space fitting to their needs.