The elder we get, the more vulnerable we are. If your elderly mother or father is still living at home, you might be concerned about their safety and welfare. Even if they still have all their mental faculties, they could be physically frail, which puts them at risk. Read on for a quick guide to some of the main things to watch out for.
Trips and Falls
Seniors often get a bit unsteady on their feet. They may need a walking stick or walker to get around safely. Things like uneven flooring or loose rugs represent a trip hazard. Carry out a risk assessment in their home. Is there any loose carpet on the stairs? Would a grab rail near the front door or back door be useful?
Ask your parent if there are any areas where they don’t feel safe walking around and try to fix them. For example, if there are steps up to the front door, install a ramp with a handrail.
Fraudsters and opportunists often target the elderly because they are vulnerable and easily taken advantage of. Make sure all exit doors have secure locks and downstairs windows can be locked with a key. Exterior lighting that is movement sensitive is useful, as it discourages snoopers from poking around in outbuildings.
Consider installing a video doorbell, linked to an app installed on your device. This helps you monitor who is coming and going, so you can spot if anyone disreputable is calling on your parents.
You may opt to install a burglar alarm but using them can be tricky and there is a risk of it going off accidentally.
Pay close attention if your elderly parent talks about a new friend. Sometimes, fraudsters befriend older people under the guise of helping them, but their main motivation is theft of valuables and worse.
Make sure all appliances are regularly serviced to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. This is critical with gas appliances. They should be checked once a year. Don’t assume your parent will remember; book the appointment yourself and remind them when it’s due.
Find a Local, Trustworthy Handyman
If you live close to your elderly parent, you will be on call to tackle small jobs and fix things when they break, but if not, look for someone trustworthy who can be there when needed. You might have no problem changing a lightbulb, but your old dad will likely struggle. He and you will feel a lot happier if there is someone he can call when needed.
Consider Assisted Living
Lots of old folks are fiercely independent and won’t entertain the idea of leaving their home, but assisted living senior suites such as Brandywine Living offer lots of benefits, including memory care and a vibrant lifestyle. Your elderly parent can still live independently if they choose, but they’ll have support on hand 24/7, which is peace of mind for everyone.
Don’t wait until an accident happens, be proactive and look at how you can keep your elderly parents safe.