Avoid a nursing home! Home modifications help seniors stay safe in their own homes

June 25th, 2015 No Comments

Modifications to the home may help keep seniors safely at home longer

The majority of adults–90 percent of people over 40–want to age in their own homes for as long as safely possible. However, many times people end up in nursing homes due to a fall or other injury caused by perils in the home. The best way to stay at home safely–and avoid nursing homes–is by making the home senior-friendly through renovations. Some renovations are as simple as removing throw rugs, but others can be more costly, such as adding a stair lift or elevator. Assistive products, such as a walker, are also helpful to the senior who needs safety help at home.

In Maryland, a research project has started that brings professionals–handymen, nurses and occupational therapists–into lower-income seniors’ homes. This project will help determine how low-cost modifications will help seniors live independently longer in their own homes, saving thousands of dollars that would have been spent for nursing homes. A monthly stay in a local New Jersey nursing home is $8,364 for a semi-private room, according to Genworth Cost of Care survey.

Home modifications are an excellent idea; adding one more layer of safety for your loved one is having someone physically there with them, such as a Visiting Angels home health aide. We’re committed to helping seniors live at home as long as possible!

Modifications to the home can include:

  • Adding a grab rail on both sides of a stair way
  • Lowering kitchen cabinets
  • Adding a ramp on home entryways
  • Adding grab bars in the bathroom
  • Raising toilet seats
  • Fixing uneven floors
  • Installing levered door handles

Assistive products include:

  • Weighted flatware for those with grip issues
  • Walkers, canes
  • Chair and bed lifters
  • Safety bars on bed
  • Toilet handle grips
  • Non-skid bath mats
  • Automatic medication reminders

To read more on the Maryland program, read the story from CBS News: http://cbsn.ws/13JnkpS.

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