Aging is a reality that we will all have to face at some point. Sooner or later, we’ll need to make adjustments to our living situations to help make life easier on our aging bodies – especially those who would like to avoid moving into assisted living facilities. When that time comes, making a few remodeling moves to your house will be the best call.
It’s also recommended that you get to these renovations before they become a necessity, and you find yourself scrambling to get them done. Making changes to accommodate a specific need will make it easier to acclimatize and adapt, which will improve the quality of life as age advances too.
So, whether you’re looking into making a few renovations for yourself or an aging relative, here are some essential ways to make your home more accommodating for senior citizens.
Get A Toilet Bidet To Renovate Your Home For Senior Citizens
A toilet bidet is an investment that will benefit all family members.
There are quite a lot of benefits that bidets provide; they’re more hygienic in the long run, and they improve convenience for your parents when they need to go #2. They also reduce household waste and can help to prevent nasty clogs and other plumbing problems.
Of course, the most significant of these benefits is convenience. The fact that your parents won’t have to stretch to their backs when they use the toilet to clean themselves is of tremendous value.
Get A Light Switch At Every Entrance Of The Room
One of the first things you will want to do is get a light switch in front of every room, so your parents won’t need to scramble when they get in at night. It sounds a bit mundane, but when you consider how more comfortable it will make them, it’s a pretty good modification for sure.
You should also make sure that the switch can be reached even if someone’s sitting in a wheelchair. The Americans with Disabilities Act recommends that light switches should be placed between 15 and 48 inches above the floor for maximum accessibility, whether from a wheelchair or if the person is standing upright.
Brighter Lights Everywhere
Lighting is something that can easily transform a room completely. Apart from the ability to help prevent any accidents, lights can also help make it easier for your seniors to engage in their favorite activities without having to strain their eyes.
Get Rid Of Every High-Pile Carpets
High-pile carpets pose an imminent risk of falls and trips. While a lot of young people prefer them for the soft material on the surface, the fact that fabrics are looser and taller makes them a safety hazard. High-pile carpets could also pose the risk of impending movement, especially for older people who use walkers or canes.
The same thing goes for wrinkled area rugs and throws rugs. If the fibers get too loose, they’re a threat.
Slip-Resistant Flooring Is The Right Option
If you’ll be purchasing new flooring materials, then it’s important for you to consider the slip ratings of the options you have. It would help if you also considered the flooring options you choose in areas such as kitchens and bathrooms and other high-use parts of the house.
Get A Curbless Shower
As your parents grow older, there’s a probability that they could develop some issues with their mobility. You’ll find that even the smallest changes in elevation can be dangerous in situations like these, and showers become immediately when moisture and slick surfaces are allowed to mix.
Amongst many other things, a curbless shower provides the opportunity for your parents to move into the shower without having to raise their legs. The design also fits the modern bathroom space quite nicely.
Things like steps and elaborate gates that might obstruct entrance to the house should be removed too. This way, your parents will be able to easily access the home and approach the door when they come in. You can also replace your front porch steps with a gradual incline that comes from the driveway.
Provide Vision Contrasts At Changes
Changes in elevation (including and most especially steps) should mark with vision contrasts to help the visually-impaired and avoid things like trips and falls.
Make Your First Floor Liveable
If your older relative is coming to live with you, then you might have to convert a room on your first floor to make it accommodative for them. This reduces the need for them to climb stairs often and can help make things significantly more convenient for them.
However, if this isn’t possible, then you could try installing a chair lift that will carry them up the stairs if they have mobility or elevation problems.
Another excellent modification for times when stairs will require will be to provide handrails. They help seniors to move quickly, and when installed on both sides, they can provide a much-needed balance too.
Wherever you think that they may lose their footing and take a nasty fall, install guardrails.
Windows And Doorways Should Be Made Wider
Narrow doorways and windows will be a problem if your older one is in a wheelchair and needs to move easily. Make sure to widen as many hallways and doors as you can, so your older relative doesn’t need to be confined to one space.
Replace Doorknobs With Levels
Doors are the gateways to new rooms, so there’s no way your older relative won’t need to use them. You also need to remember that as they grow older, people tend to lose their ability to deal with grip-and-twist knobs. So, replace all knobs – to taps, doors, and perhaps even drawers – with levers.
Shelves Should Be Lower
In the same manner, like light switches, you’ll need to make some simple modifications to shelves to make them lower too. The alternative to this will be to provide stepladders to get into the shelves, and as we’ve covered extensively already, ladders might also end up becoming a problem for older adults who have locomotion issues and can’t lift their legs past a certain point.
Install A Call Button Or Phone In Every Room
When a senior gets involved in an accident and can’t get out by themselves, they need to call for help. So, you can consider getting a call button for your senior to wear and always have around them or install a phone in every room so that they’ll be able to alert you when they need help.