There are many reasons why it is better for the elderly to stay at home for as long as possible. To begin with, cost can be a factor. Nursing homes and assisted living homes cost twice as much as home care, and the cost may not be fully covered by Medicaid or Medicare. This kind of expense can certainly be a burden on the elderly or their family.
Additionally, living at home is just better for the elderly individual in the long-run. There are studies that show individuals living in a nursing home are more likely to become depressed, more at risk for illness, and much less likely to live longer. According to Growing Old Options, “When polled, most people say that they want to continue to stay in their own homes as they age, as opposed to senior living facilities or living with their children.” (Pacchiana, 2011)
If you have an elderly loved one, you can help ensure they are able to enjoy aging in place through different home care products that you can easily purchase and install. Two of the major reasons why the elderly aren’t able to take care of themselves as normal are risk of injury and loss of mobility. They do need help with various day-to-day tasks. You can easily choose from home care products that will make a big difference and ensure your elderly loved one is able to take care of themselves.
The bathroom is the biggest danger for elderly individuals because there are so many chances of injury. You will need to make several modifications. The easiest thing to do is look for ADA approved options, such as:
- - Walk-in showers with handrails.
- - ADA approved bidet toilet seats for easier hygiene care.
- - Sinks with push button or sensor controlled faucets.
- - Doors that are easier to open.
- - Show seats for the elderly who cannot stand up for extended periods of time.
In the kitchen, you will need to make sure that everything is easy to reach for elderly individuals. You could choose to install pull-down cabinets so that the elderly loved one doesn’t have to stand on a step-stool and take a risk of a fall.
Additionally, there are plates and utensils that have been adapted specifically for elderly individuals who may suffer from such conditions as arthritis and may not be able to hold or use traditional items.
Elderly individuals may find it much harder to dress themselves, but that doesn’t mean they should constantly have to depend on other people. You can find a variety of home care items to help, such as:
- - Special tools for fastening buttons or using zippers
- - Tools for slipping into shoes and socks
- - Steps or stoops to help the individual reach the bed
- - Rails for the bed to help with sitting up or lying down
If the home has stairs, then the elderly individual doesn’t need to constantly climb them. There are stair lifts that will work in almost any home and they should definitely be considered a must for safety. If they are not an option, then the elderly should have everything they need on the first floor.
Aging at home is certainly the best option for elderly loved ones. They will be happier and more comfortable. There are plenty of homecare tools that can make this option a reality too. All you need to do is determine how their home can be adapted properly so that they may maintain more of their independence.
Pacchiana, M. (2011, June 14). Aging in Place: New Tools to Facilitate an Old Idea. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from Aging in Place: http://growingoptions.wordpress.com/2011/06/14/aging-in-place-new-tools-facilitate-an-old-idea-2/