Aging is often paired with a gradual decline in physical and cognitive function. Although there are certain things that can be done to decelerate this decline, it’s a natural part of life that nobody can completely avoid.
Despite the fact that aging is inevitable, it doesn’t mean life can’t still be fun and enjoyable the older people get. Putting the right things in place within the home, whether it’s various technological devices or movement aids, can ensure that the elderly population stays safe while maintaining their independence.
When seniors are able to maintain their independence, it can boost their confidence and sense of fulfillment. Independence leads to a more positive outlook and improved quality of life. They feel more capable of making their own decisions and feel in control of their lives.
One of the best ways to maintain this independence is by using the many great tools and technologies that have been created to make daily living much easier for the elderly. Furthermore, making use of personal emergency response systems can be of tremendous help to the elderly.
From the smart home systems to the installation of handrails and ramps, here are five effective home modifications that are perfect for the elderly.
1. Medical Alarm Systems
Medical alert systems for seniors or personal safety alarms are small, easy-to-use devices that provide seniors with emergency support when they’re in trouble.
If they feel that they are in danger or they have a serious fall, they can activate their alarm system, which will put them in immediate contact with emergency medical personnel. Connecting directly to emergency services ensures that seniors can get medical support for any potential injuries if they’ve had an accident.
Medical alert systems also allow aging individuals to feel more independent and confident moving around in their homes without support.
2. Smart Security Systems
Smart alarm systems are becoming more and more popular every year. They’re ideal for anybody, but they can be particularly helpful for the elderly population that lives alone.
These security systems offer maximum security so seniors can feel safe when they live on their own. They usually comprise:
- Outdoor cameras
- A doorbell that has a built-in microphone, speaker, and video camera
- Outdoor lighting that turns on when there is nearby motion
- An alarm system that sounds if an intruder tries to break-in.
Installation of a smart security system is quick and easy. They are an affordable way for the elderly to feel safer and more relaxed while maintaining their independence at home.
3. Smart Home Devices
Smart technology isn’t exclusive to home security systems. It can be found elsewhere in the home and can be extremely useful for seniors with limited mobility or poor vision.
Devices such as the Amazon Alexa or Echo can make home living simple for seniors. They can be paired up to the lighting circuits or other pieces of technology so that elderly individuals don’t need to get up and manually turn things on and off.
By reducing the need for unnecessary movement in the home, it decreases the risk of seniors losing their balance or tripping and falling. In turn, they’re less likely to sustain any major injuries.
4. Widened Doorways
For elderly individuals who struggle with their mobility and require walking aids or a wheelchair, widened doorways can be extremely helpful.
When there is limited space, it can cause seniors to lose balance and fall over. Widening doorways reduces this risk and helps to keep them safe.
Although getting doorways widened can be a significant home renovation, it’s often worth completing for the extra safety that it provides.
Ramps are one of the simplest, yet most effective home modifications for the elderly. They alleviate the dangers of seniors with limited mobility falling over when trying to navigate the steps in and around their home.
If an elderly individual suffers with their balance, even just one small step can be difficult. Ramps can be placed over these steps to make things easier.
Ramps can be used both indoors and outdoors. If an elderly person regularly leaves the house, it might be worth installing a ramp at the front door to reduce the risk of a nasty fall.
Indoor ramps are usually made out of a soft rubber material and they can easily be moved from one area to another. However, they can also be fixed in place if this is a safer option.