It’s hard to admit but we all need a little help sometimes- especially when it comes to making our home more accessible as we age. The good news is that making small changes to make your home safer to live in is much easier than you think!
In this spirit of June being National Safety Month, ABC would like to remind you that we offer more than just traditional home care services…we are also proud to offer home modifications such as handicap ramp & grab rail bar installation etc. by our licensed ABC contractor. The graphic below shows a few instances of home modifications…
Home Safety Illustration Courtesy of National Institute on Aging
…can you think of any home modifications your home or your loved one’s home may need to make it safer or more accessible to age in place? If so, give us a call and schedule your home modification appointment today!
Simple Home Safety Tips
Aside from home modifications that can help make home more accessible, there are other simple things you can do to ensure the safety of your home as well.
Examples of these easy safety-first tips are as follows:
Safety throughout your home
- Ensure your smoke detectors in the home are a smoke/Co2 combination detector and that they are situated in the kitchen as well as near all bedrooms and/or at the bottom of each stairwell. Check with your local city/town for the fire safety code and adhere to that.
- Test all existing detectors in the home every 6 months to ensure they are working properly and replace the battery twice a year (unless advised otherwise)
- De-clutter and consider getting rid of some low-lying objects or pieces of furniture (such as coffee tables, draft blockers, cords and boxes) that could pose as a tripping hazard
- Don’t leave candles burning in an empty room and remember to cut the wicks down if they are too long
Lighting makes a difference
- Have a few battery or solar-powered flashlights at the ready in the main living areas of your home in the event of an unexpected power outage
- Ensure adequate lighting in bedrooms, bathrooms and hallways
Bedrooms and bathroom safety
- Keep the pathway from the bed to the bathroom clear and free of obstruction at all times
- Make sure the bed is at an appropriate height to allow for safe transfers if ever needed
- Especially if you have a gas stove, avoid wearing clothes with long sleeves while cooking
- Keep loose items like towels, saran wrap, aluminum foil, potholders and papers away from burners
- Strategically place frequently used items (such as cutlery, utensils, medications etc) in easily accessible locations, ideally counter-height drawers or cabinets
- When using a grill, ensure that it is far enough away from the home so that there isn’t an imminent risk of it catching fire on siding etc.
- Replace appliances that have fraying or damaged electrical cords
- Don’t put too many electrical cords into one outlet or extension cord- overloading the electrical source can be dangerous!
- Disconnect small appliances when you’re not using them
- Refuel any gas-powered machines out in the open and away from foliage and buildings and, if you have a gas can, ensure that it is not near a heat source that could potentially catch fire
Safe storage of medications, personal care products and cleaning materials
- Keep all medications in their original containers so you don’t mix up medications or overlook expiration dates
- Keep medications out of reach of small children or adults with cognitive disabilities
- Never mix bleach, ammonia, or other cleaning liquids together when you are cleaning. When mixed, some cleaning liquids can negatively interact with one another and potentially create deadly gases
- Double check where you have beauty and personal care products stored. All aerosol cans explode if exposed to high heat so keep these away from heat sources
Especially when it comes to fire safety & home hazard prevention, it is critical to be diligent. For that reason we have included both on our Home Safety Checklist.
Stay safe and know that when you or your loved one needs help, ABC is here for you!