Many seniors would prefer aging in place over assisted living. However, as we age, our homes can pose serious risks for falls and various types of injuries. If you have a loved one who wants to age at home, some necessary home modifications will ensure that your senior will remain safe throughout the house.
If your senior use mobility aids, like a walker or wheelchair, widening the doorways is a must. Standard residential door widths average between 24 inches wide and 36 inches. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) suggests that doorways have at least a clear width of 32 inches from the door’s face to the opposite stop.
Ramps should be installed throughout the home. Exterior stairs can be a challenge for seniors who struggle with balance. That’s why installing a ramp on the home’s exterior will help seniors independently reach their front door. Indoor threshold ramps are helpful for seniors who use a wheelchair. These indoor ramps provide a smooth transition from one surface to another, therefore making it safer for seniors to navigate the home.
Lower Kitchen Countertops and Cabinetry
As people get older, they may find it difficult to reach their countertops and cabinetry. This is especially true for seniors who rely on a wheelchair. Hire professional contractors to adjust the counter height and lower the sink so that your senior can do things independently. Also, have the contractors lower kitchen cabinets so that your senior can safely get things they need. Lastly, opt to lower your microwave and put it on a microwave stand as opposed to the back of the counter or over the oven.
Shower and Bathtub Modifications
The bathroom is one of the most dangerous places for a senior to navigate. It’s a wet and often narrow room that is the perfect environment for slips and falls. However, there are a few modifications that will make the bathroom safer for your senior. One simple modification is installing grab bars throughout the bathroom. You can also swap out a traditional tub for a walk-in shower or walk-in tub. Lastly, you can purchase a bathtub transfer bench to make getting in and out of the tub easier.
Maryland Home Accessibility Experts
Want help creating a safe environment for your aging senior? Let the experts at Freedom Mobility help. We offer a wide range of home accessibility products as well as provide aging-in-place services. Our Certified Aging-in-Place specialists will work with you to create a plan that ensures your senior is comfortable and safe at home.
Click here to request a consultation.