Home Modification Tips For Senior Home Safety

Home Modification Tips For Senior Home Safety

Home Modification Tips For Senior Home Safety

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According to statistics, 2 out of 5 disabled Australians are more than 65 years old. That means the likelihood of living with some type of mobility issue increases as we get older. Many seniors are also making the choice to continue living at their home rather than moving somewhere else that offers assisted living.

Add all of that up, and an increasing number of people are needing to optimize their home environment for comfort and safety. And there are many different ways of blending accessibility and safety with your existing decor so that your house still feels like your home.

So with that in mind, here’s come of the more essential home modifications for seniors to age in place.

1. Lighting

Impaired vision can very easily cause accidents at the best of times, but this is even a bigger problem when there’s no proper lighting. So to start by increasing the visibility in and around your home by replacing all of the existing bulbs with LEDs. Another idea to increase safety is by installing touch-activated lamps and motion-sensing night lights in the hallways, bedrooms, and bathrooms.

When it comes to safely lighting the inside of your home, consistency is key as vision often declines as we age. Keeping the lighting levels as uniform as possible throughout your house means your eyes won’t need to adjust between rooms. 

Another reason this is very important is it also helps you to stay balanced. Besides installing new light bulbs and fixtures, allowing natural light inside is also very healthy for your eyes and your health in general.

2. Tapware

As hand movements like gripping, turning, and twisting often become increasingly difficult for seniors, it’s a good idea to replace all twist tap faucets in kitchens and bathrooms. The cheapest and most popular option to replace them with are mixers with lever handles. 

That being said, there are so many different tap styles available that vary in suitability, including faucets that can be operated with feet instead of hands.

Faucets that operate automatically without touching are a great option for older people, especially those suffering from arthritis. There are also faucets with hose attachments available which make it much easier for seniors to use without much reaching or contorting. 

Anti-scald faucets which prevent sudden hot water bursts are an excellent safety measure, whereas attachments for flood prevention automatically shut off the water line after detecting an overflow.

3. Ramps

Even one or two stairs can be an Mt Everest-sized challenge for any seniors who live with consistent or occasional vertigo, unsteadiness, or other balance issues. Replacing stairs with ramps is one of the most effective ways of dealing with this issue. 

Despite the cost of installing ramps in your home, it is often well worth it for the greater sense of independence. Plus they may be a necessary home modification for older adults who need to use a wheelchair.

Ramps can also be installed permanently or temporarily over door thresholds to provide a smooth transition between rooms. Sturdy ramps have high-traction surfaces to help with the prevention of trips and fall while making navigation so much easier and safer inside the home. 

Another method of increasing the safety and accessibility of your home is by adding traction tape to stairs and any other surfaces where grip is important.

4. Technology

Thanks to recent innovations in technology, there’s plenty of high-tech products available to help make homes safer for seniors. Known as smart home devices, they are relatively cheap tools that increase safety, convenience, and functionality when aging-in-place. 

Once connected via a smartphone app, these devices are typically pretty easy to set up and allow seniors to live comfortably. And maybe even have a little bit of fun as well.

Typically controlled by voice commands, automated smart home devices can assist with a variety of interconnected electronics. 

This includes adjusting the lighting, making appointments, reminders to take medications, and making calls to friends and family. They can also be connected with smart video doorbells for video monitoring and two-way conversations.