• Install stairlifts, elevators, and handrails to ensure safety when navigating the home.
• Upgrade bathroom fixtures such as grab bars, non-slip mats, and walk-in showers for easier use.
• Replace old furniture with pieces that are easy to get in and out of, such as power lift chairs.
• Add extra cushioning and extensions to tables, counters, and other surfaces for easier access.
• Use LED bulbs throughout the home for better visibility and energy efficiency.
If you have aging parents, you may wonder what home modifications you can make to ensure their home remains safe and comfortable. As your parents age, it is important to take the necessary steps to ensure they can stay in their homes with as much independence as possible. Here are some practical tips for making modifications to your parent’s home.
Modify Your Stairs
If your house has stairs, it’s important to consider how these can be modified for easier use. This may include installing the following:
Stairlifts and Elevators
One of the most important modifications that can be made is a stairlift or elevator installation. This helps ensure that your parent doesn’t have to struggle with stairs if they become too difficult or unsafe. Stairlifts also provide a sense of security, giving your parent the peace of mind that they will not fall if they miss a step. Elevators, however, are ideal if there are multiple floors in the house or your parents prefer a faster way to move up and down.
Installing handrails on staircases, thresholds, and other areas of the home can also help your parent maintain their balance while they move around the house. This is especially important if you have elderly parents prone to falls or require walking assistance. For added safety, consider installing handrails on both sides of the stairs.
Ramps provide a safe and easy way for your parent to enter or exit their home without worrying about steps. They can also be installed easily and quickly, making them a great option for aging parents who need an economical solution.
Another area that should be modified is the bathroom. Making simple changes in the bathroom, such as installing grab bars, non-slip mats, and walk-in showers can help prevent falls and make it easier for your parent to get around safely in the bathroom. Additionally, consider raising the toilet seat height or adding an adjustable tub seat to make bathing easier for your parent. It will also help if you have a bathroom down the hall from their bedroom. This way, they won’t have to climb the stairs late at night if they need to use the toilet.
You should provide a comfortable and safe environment for your parent. Consider replacing old furniture with pieces that are easy to get in and out of.
Provide Power Lift Chairs
Power lift chairs are an excellent way to make it easier for parents to get in and out of a chair. These chairs can be raised or lowered depending on the user’s needs. This will help ensure that your parent is comfortable sitting down or standing up.
Provide Additional Cushioning
If your parent’s sofa or chair is too hard, adding a few extra pillows or cushions can help make it more comfortable. This will also provide additional support and make it easier to sit or stand up without straining their back or legs.
Add Table and Counter Top Extensions
Adding extensions to the table and countertops can help make it easier for your parent to reach things without stretching or strain. This is especially helpful if your parent has mobility issues or difficulty reaching items placed too far away.
Vision changes are common among aging adults, so ensuring their home has adequate lighting is essential. Installing motion-sensor lights throughout the house can help ensure that there are no dark areas where your parent could trip and fall. Additionally, look into replacing traditional light bulbs with LED bulbs since they tend to last longer and use less energy than regular bulbs. You may also consider adding nightlights in the hallways or bedroom, especially if your parent wakes up at night.
Hardwood and laminate flooring can be slippery and dangerous, so consider replacing them with tile or vinyl flooring. This will provide more traction and prevent slips while walking around the house. You can also opt for a carpeted floor to help keep your parent’s feet warm and to provide cushioning if they fall.
Making these modifications to your parent’s home can help them remain independent and safe as they age. Additionally, it will give you peace of mind knowing that your home is safe and comfortable. So don’t delay in making these important changes today!