With their weaker bodies, seniors are exposed to a lot of safety risks. Even those under home health care in California are not immune from these dangers. Here is a useful safety guide for the best in home care for seniors on how to protect them from harm while doing their everyday activities.
The Safety Risks Facing Seniors
While there are a lot of safety risks that seniors encounter, these are the ones they should especially be aware of. These risks can lead to injuries and illnesses that can hamper their day-to-day activities. Some might also lead to prolonged hospitalizations.
Due to their weaker sense of balance, older people are very prone to falls. And because of their weaker bones, even minor ones can lead to injuries and decreased mobility. These can even be fatal for those in advanced age.
According to the National Safety Council, around 70% of falls happen at home. These are usually due to seniors tripping over stuff lying on the floor. Those with poor eyesight can also fall when using stairs. Bathrooms are another particular danger zone, as wet floors can lead to slips.
Fires are always a danger to any home. But seniors are particularly at risk when one breaks out. Because they are slower, they might not be able to get out in time. Additionally, they are more susceptible to the associated dangers like smoke inhalations and burns.
Even the simple act of eating can be a safety risk for seniors. Choking is a real danger here, especially to those who have medical conditions like Parkinson’s disease. Because they have a harder time chewing food, large pieces can get lodged into their airway.
Additionally, there is the danger of poisoning. While this is always a danger for everyone, seniors are particularly susceptible to it because of their weaker immune systems. Note that food poisoning is just one category here. Chemical poisoning brought about by different consumer products is also something that you should watch out for.
As mentioned earlier, there are a multitude of hazards that seniors can encounter. Even something as innocuous as a misplaced tool can be a risk to an unaware elder person. The situation can be worsened by conditions like Alzheimer’s or dementia, where they are not able to properly assess their surroundings. As such, caregivers and companions need to take the initiative in dealing with these hidden safety risks.
Senior Safety Guideline No. 1: Cleaning Up The House
The first step in ensuring that seniors are safe while under home health care in California is by cleaning their place of obstacles. Ensure that no items are lying around on the floor for them to step on. This requires diligence on the part of homemakers and other family members to immediately pick up on these items.
You would also want to rearrange furniture to give seniors more walking space. Make sure that all the areas they most commonly go to are easily accessible. This includes the bathroom and the dining area. If you are living in a multi-story home, have the seniors stay on the ground floor so that they won’t have to climb stairs.
Another thing to ensure is that the elderly would not slip as they move around. Make sure that the floor is thoroughly dry before letting them move around. You can also use anti-slip guards under rugs and carpets to make them more stable. Meanwhile, handrails would be useful for more mobility-challenged elders.
Safety Tips For Seniors No. 2: Ensure Proper Tool Use
As it is, you can’t always prevent seniors from using different items in the house. What you can do instead is to make sure that these are safe for them to handle. Start by organizing the ones they commonly use so that they won’t have to fumble around. You would also want to get rid of any broken tool to avoid injuries.
When using appliances, it would be best for you to assist the elderly. Here, you can volunteer to plug any electrical device for them. You would also want to inspect these appliances for signs of damage and repair or replace them before letting seniors use them.
Safety Tips For Seniors No. 3: Make The Kitchen Safe
The kitchen is an especially popular place for older people, particularly those who love to cook. But they can also have many hidden dangers. The best in home care for seniors ensures that they have safe access to the kitchen. As such, you would want to pay special attention to this area.
Start by bringing down any items from high cabinets and putting them within reach. This way, seniors will not have to exert a lot of effort when getting these items. You would also want to see that these items, like pots and pans, are still in good condition.
When cooking, advise the senior to avoid wearing loose clothing. These can easily catch onto things as they move around. They might also catch fire quickly. After the cooking session is done, be sure to clean up thoroughly.
Safety Tips For Seniors No. 4: Protect Them Against Harmful Substances
As is with any item, make sure that products with harmful chemicals are properly stored away, preferably in places where seniors don’t go often. You would also want to install equipment like carbon monoxide detectors as part of your fire prevention measures.
Another thing that you would want to be careful of is medication. When taken incorrectly, these meds can harm the elderly. To avoid that, keep all medications in their original containers so that you don’t mix them up. You can also ask the pharmacist to put large labels to make them easier to read.
Safety Tips For Seniors No. 5: Follow Up On Them Regularly
Whether your elderly loved one is living alone or with you, make sure that you regularly monitor their activities. One effective way to do this is to have them wear medical alert devices. These typically come in the form of bracelets and send out warnings should anything happen. You can also give your loved ones a senior-friendly mobile device for communication purposes.
You also need to create a plan of action in case of emergencies. Make sure that all the important contact numbers like hospitals, doctors, the fire department, and the police are available for use. Discuss with your loved one important rules such as not talking to strangers and calling you immediately if they want to tackle something. Remember that the best in home care for seniors always carry a significant amount of preparedness in it.
Keep Your Elderly Loved Ones Safe Every Time
All of these strategies will help you ensure that your elderly loved ones are protected from harm. But if you want to have additional peace of mind, then you should have the best home health care in California for them. We can provide that through our trained staff who will assist them in their daily activities. Contact us today for consultations and get best in home care for seniors.