Home safety tips for aging in place

Aging in Place: Senior Home Safety Tips

Bethesda Health | March 25, 2020

If given a choice, seniors would prefer to age in place; either staying in their current residence or choosing from a range of age-appropriate housing options within their community.  According to a 2010 AARP survey, nearly 90 percent of respondents over the age of 65 said they wish to remain in their home for as long as possible, and 92 percent said they wanted to remain in their communities.

However, as we age, our senses tend to decline, making it difficult and even unsafe to live at home. Home accidents, such as falls, are a major source of injuries for seniors and can even cause death. As a result, senior home safety has become a major concern for both seniors and family members.  By taking simple precautions and appropriately adapting your home you can help ensure a safe and accident-free home.

General Home Safety Tips

Many of the following home modifications are easy and inexpensive to do. More complicated home modifications, such as installing secure grab bars, may require a professional. Investing in the right home modifications can help make aging-in-place easier and safer:

Kitchen Safety

The kitchen may be “the heart of the home,” but it does have its share of dangers to seniors like burns and losing their grip on utensils. Keeping kitchens well-organized and utensils in easy reach helps reduce falls and broken glass.

Bathroom Safety

The bathroom is full of slippery surfaces from the sink to the shower. Installing hand bars and other assistive measures helps seniors navigate the bathroom easily and avoid falls. They will also help seniors maintain a sense of independence and dignity.

Living Space Safety

In living spaces like bedrooms and living rooms, it’s easy for clutter to accumulate and not see areas that may need repair, like carpets. Loose carpeting or damaged floors increase the risk of falling and loose cords can get damaged and cause a fire hazard.

While this list may not cover every potential hazard, it will serve as a good starting point for senior home safety. For more senior home safety tips and information around preparing your loved one’s home for a comfortable environment, see our Senior Home Safety section on our blog.

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