With old age, there is an association of several health factors, such as difficulty in standing, sitting, or walking, apart from weak eyesight and weak hearing power. There are some things that cannot be controlled on our end, but a few things can easily be managed by the children to make the life of their elderly easy. Here, we are going to discuss some of the essential home improvements for elderly parents that will help simplify their daily routine and keep unwanted accidents at bay.
Elders are more prone to falling. This is an unwanted accident that has an injury rate higher than road accidents. Bathrooms are the most common place where old people face this trouble. This is because they have weak bones and muscles, which brings difficulty in the standard process of sitting down, taking a shower, etc.
Here are a few essential home improvements for the elderly parent’s bathroom.
- Install slip-resistant floor tiles
Either go for a complete change of floor tiles or simply stick to the slip-resistant treatment to the existing floor tiles. This will increase the traction on the tiles and make it easy for the elderly people to walk on, with very fewer chances of slipping.
- Install grab bars
These will add an extra layer of protection in the bathroom. Further, you can also install these in the other rooms to help them in the movement around the house. When they find it easy to move around, then it will also be a booster for their health.
Movement around the house is always essential for elderly parents. For this, if you need renovation, then you should do it. Here are a few home improvement ideas for enhanced and easy movement.
- Install ramps
To make your house step-free, install ramps. These can also be installed at the main entrance. Portable ramps are also popular for houses that are near the end of a corridor. Being portable means that you can collapse them when there is no use.
- Raise your floor
To make all the rooms step-free, you can level all the floors, including the bathroom and kitchen. This is very essential irrespective of the scenario of the elderly being wheelchair-bound or not. This also minimizes the strain on their body, as there will be no need for them to raise their legs for walking.
Even though age has caught up to them, your parents still like to be independent and carry out their responsibilities up to the maximum of their capabilities. Hence, it is crucial that they keep doing the household work, like washing the dishes. However, for this, they need to have access to the area. Elderly people prefer to relax more and hence if the sink will be at their seating level, then it will be easier for them to work.
However, an easier alternative is to use the space available under the sink. Take up a renovation project and revamp the open space under the sink so that elderly parents or grandparents can access it easily. This will also be beneficial for those who are bound to a wheelchair. With this, they will also remain physically engaged.
With old age, there come to the issues of vision getting deteriorated, which can also cause near-sightedness. Hence, the elderly may struggle to find things at a close range, causing difficulties for them to find the items. For this, it is highly recommended to use transparent cabinets.
So another essential home improvement for the elderly parent is to replace the cabinet doors with see-through ones. When you can easily see inside these kitchen cabinets, it becomes more simple to find the items of your choice.
Another way is to install sliding hardware on the cabinet doors. Levers can be used as handles. This will make it better and simpler for the elders to grasp the kitchenware and accessories.
The presence and implementation of an open floor plan are very beneficial for elderly parents since it allows them to roam freely with no fear of bumping into something like furniture and sustaining an unwanted injury. With more space, they will not be scared to walk into any room. This will also boost their confidence in carrying out the regular household work, at their convenience.
An open floor plan is also beneficial for those elders who are bound to a wheelchair. They will have wider passageways to roam around the house.
The height and placement of electrical sockets and switches are done as per the standards. For instance, the light switches are installed at eye level and power sockets at a lower level. However, for the elders who are bound to wheelchairs, it is difficult to access both these electrical connections. Neither can they bend down or stand up straight to access them.
Hence, it is important to carry out a home improvement project at a smaller scale, which should be centered on the proper position of sockets and switches according to the elders. Along with this, also ensure multiple light switches are placed in different parts of a room for the central lighting. With this, the elderly parents will never walk into the dark.
With a perfectly designed house for elders, it is easy to cook, entertain friends and family. There is a suitable space for keeping plants. A vertical garden can also be used in which you can display beautiful flowers. The choice of furniture for the elderly house should be done strictly according to the size available and the area in which it needs to be constructed. A lot more suggestions and ideas are given in this article that will cost less than the bill of a hospital. There is always cost saving with these ideas - either financially or emotionally. Homespice