The time may come when your parents are finding it difficult to live on their own. While the option of a retirement home is there, it may not be the best option for your beloved parents. But bringing them home is also a challenge since their physical condition can give them trouble. This is where the right upgrades and modifications come in.
Here are some tips on how to make your family home a lot more senior-friendly:
Consult With Professionals
Before anything else, you need to consult with professionals about the changes. There are aging-in-place specialists who offer consultation services about home upgrades. They can inspect your home and see what potential changes can be made. They are very thorough and will give you a laundry list of improvements. It will be up to you to decide on what upgrades to make. You should also consult with your parent’s doctor to ask if there are any medical conditions you need to be aware of. For example, your doctor might think that your parent has trouble moving. Adding grab bars around the house so that they can stay upright is a good move.
Keep The Pets Under Control
While adding another member to the household, you should also take note of the current members of it. You children should easy enough to control and educate about their grandparent moving in. However, if you have a pet at home, they can be a bit of trouble. One of the big dangers that the elderly face falls and slips. An enthusiastic pet or a careless one could cause an accident when interacting with your parent. It is a good idea to set aside a special area for pets so they aren’t in the way and to clean up after them if they leave a mess. This can help prevent any future problems.
A general improvement that works no matter what condition your parent is in is to install better lighting. A person’s eyesight is one of the first things to go as they age. With better lights around the house, your parent would be able to see better and get around with no problem. Change your current lights into LEDs which give bright but not harsh lighting. Additionally, you should install night lights around the house, especially near the bathroom for your parent. This allows them to move easily at night and prevents any accidents during any midnight trip to the toilet.
Accessibility is Key
Your house needs to be as accessible as possible. As your parent grows older, they will likely have problems getting around and doing normal tasks. It is better to install some improvements early so that they can use it as they need it. Additional improvements can come later. For example, you should adjust the height of your kitchen sink. Making it wheelchair accessible allows wheelchair-bound parents the chance to contribute by cleaning dishes. Additionally, widening some doors can be a good idea to accommodate crutches and wheelchairs.
Keep Them On The Ground
If you are looking for a place for your parents in the house, one important priority is to keep them at the ground level. Look for a room to clear out that is close to a bathroom and is on the ground level of your home. This eliminates the need for them to walk upstairs or downstairs, which lowers the chances of an accident. If there is no room, you should consider building an addition. That actually might be better since building a room from scratch allows you to install all that they need.
Contract Outside Help
Taking care of your parent is going to be a full-time responsibility. If you feel that you will not be able to meet those needs, then you should get some help. Fortunately, professional home health care services are available these days. Many people think this requires a live-in nurse but it is possible to get a caretaker who comes in just for the day or for special requests. They greatly reduce the load on your shoulders. Many people worry about the price but some services offer reasonable rates and your family members can pitch in to support.
Providing a home to your parent in their old age can be a good thing. For one, it allows them to be around you and your family longer. It also eliminates the worry about their condition since you are there every step of the way. A few simple improvements around the house are worth all these benefits.