Many seniors, as they age, need to update their homes and even might be parenting teenagers to help their working children out. You should teach your teen grandchildren to help you with chores and safety as you age and make changes to your home. Some of the changes for aging in place may be new flooring, bathroom modifications, reducing hazards, kitchen safety changes, and transportation services to get around.
Depending on the type of flooring you own in your home, you may have to make some changes when aging. Get rid of slippy throw rugs that slide out from under you. Choose low pile and thin carpeting in rooms because you are less likely to fall. If you have slippery floors in the bathroom or kitchen, there is an ADA non-stick coating that can be put on with a brush. This is less expensive than remodeling the whole floor.
Wood floors are a good choice because they are safer and you are less likely to fall. Choose floors that come with non-slip features and applications. About 35% of remodeling when aging involves the whole house. You can remodel, tackling projects one step at a time.
Adding Bathroom Modifications
As mobility gets harder, adding a raised toilet seat will make it easier to get on and off. Adding grab bars in the bathtub and shower will keep you from slipping. They can be put near the toilet and sink too. For some seniors, installing a walk-in tub allows will allow them to continue bathing without help. It has raised seats, grab bars and a jet massage. Walk-in tubs are pricey but have many features that help with mobility issues. Curbless showers have a flat floor design that allows seniors to walk in and out of them without climbing or stepping over anything.
Wear safe shoes that are comfortable. Skip the heels and slick soles. Some companies that make safe shoes for seniors are Propet, Hush Puppies, and Sketchers. Remove books, magazines, computer equipment, games, kitchen appliances, yard equipment from stairs, floors, room entranceways, and the lawn. When parenting teenagers teach them to pick up after themselves and keep your home safe. When going up and downstairs, use the handrails or install a lift if needed. Over 25 million seniors aging in place rely on other people and devices.
Changes In the Kitchen
Install lower kitchen sinks to eliminate bending and a sprayer to rinse off dishes. Get a safe stool to climb on to reach cabinets and other high spots. Buy energy-saving appliances, a refrigerator that is easy to open and has plenty of space for storage. Buy ranges with large displays that are easy to read and controls that are not hard to learn to use. Opt for a smaller microwave and use it to make rice, heat sauces, and reheat foods. Consider using hard plastic dishware that does not break easily. Organize the kitchen to make it less cluttered.
As you age, you may not be able to drive or only want to drive locally. You can drive yourself or have family or friends drive you. That may not always work because they may work or have other obligations. Your local hospital or area may have a bus or transportation that can be used for medical appointments, shopping, or other activities. If you live in a good area, you may be able to walk if it is safe. Many towns and cities have safe bus services for public transportation and senior services often provide rides. Many adults, about 20%, don’t think healthcare is not prepared for seniors.
Look into transportation in your area to find some options, so you do not have to count all the time on family or others. Perhaps if you are parenting teenagers to help your kids they can give you a ride at times because you are helping them.
These are some ways to prepare your home for aging. Start early and these projects can be finished by the time you’re ready to retire. Don’t wait until you are too sick to handle it.