The Institute For Healthcare Policy and Innovation’s National Poll on Healthy Aging found that 88% of adults aged 50 to 80 felt that remaining in their current home is essential. Yet, only 33% believe their home is currently set up to support aging in place.
Is your mom’s home designed for aging in place? Does she have a main-level bedroom, bathroom, living space, and kitchen area? Can she exit her home quickly or are there steep stairs to the driveway or yard? How close is she to a health clinic or hospital?
If she’s told to stop driving, would she struggle to get groceries and other household necessities? These are all things that must be considered if your senior parent wishes to remain living independently at home. Here are are few ways you can help improve her living situation and how senior home care can support her wishes:
Heighten Safety In Her Home
Start by going through your mom’s home and pinpointing what can be done to make her home safer. Would she benefit from having grab bars near her toilet and inside and outside of her bathtub or shower stall? Is her flooring in the bathroom slippery when it’s wet? Does she have non-slip mats?
How bright is her lighting? If her laundry room is in the basement, are those stairs dark and narrow? Can you add lighting fixtures or relocate the washer and dryer to the main floor? Are her patios, front steps, garage stairs, and decks brightly lit? If she had to rush out of her home in the middle of the night, would she struggle to see where she was going?
Are your mom’s floors carpeted or hardwood? Does she have decorative rugs down on slick surfaces like tile, hardwood, or polished stone? If a rug slips while she’s walking on it, it’s unsafe. Loose rugs should be removed. If any carpeting is loose or torn, it needs repairing or replacing.
When your mom is cooking a meal, does she have a fire extinguisher nearby? Make sure it’s charged and rated for kitchen fires. Does she know how to use it? It doesn’t hurt to walk through how a fire extinguisher works.
Consider Her Family’s Health History
Your mom’s health may seem fine for now, but what is her family’s health history? Colorectal cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis may pass through families.
Make sure your mom is regularly screened for these health issues. If she is diagnosed with any of these or something else, she needs to take her medications, follow exercise recommendations, and focus on a diet recommended by her doctor. She may need help with these lifestyle changes.
Improve your mom’s ability to live alone by making sure she has supportive care from senior home care aides. She doesn’t have to struggle, and you don’t have to rush to her home after work each day. Call a specialist in home care to learn more.