5 Home Care Tips for the Elderly to Ensure Safety
In America, one senior citizen is treated in the emergency room for a fall every 11 seconds and one senior citizen dies from a fall every 19 minutes. Whether we like it or not, our parents and loved ones don’t stay young and able forever. As much as we would love to, aging changes every part of the body. Posture and gait changes as people age.
Why We Should Take Extra Care of the Elderly
The entire structure of the body has everything to do with our skeleton. The skeleton is a very crucial foundation that is responsible for supporting essential parts of the body like the skin, tissues, muscles, and all our vital organs. Then there are the bones which are connected through joints and encourage the skeleton’s flexibility. These joints are also cushioned by cartilages, fluid, and synovial membranes. Although the brain is responsible for coordinating the movement, changes in the muscles, bones, and joints directly affect this movement which can cause deficiencies and hindered mobility. Here are the different changes in an elderly’s physical condition:
- The bones become highly brittle and will likely break easily because aging can make people lose their bone density which then loses calcium and other minerals.
- Limited movement as the disks located between the bones in the spine deplete fluid and become thinner.
- The joints will lose its flexibility as they become stiffer due to fluid depletion. The cartilages which cushion the joints also rub together and deteriorate.
- The muscle fibers also compress which replaces the muscle tissues with a tough fibrous tissue. Overall, strength, energy, and endurance are reduced due to the muscle mass loss.
Because of these changes, falls and accidents are more likely to happen. Seniors are also more prone to illnesses as the immune system slowly deteriorates. And your elderly loved ones will get weaker and weaker by the day. So it’s essential that we take extra care of our beloved seniors and do these simple 5 health care tips to ensure safety for the elderly.
- Make the Entire House Senior-Friendly
If you don’t fall-proof your house for its elderly inhabitants, you’re looking at an accident waiting to happen. Make sure they only wear footwear that’s nonslip. Ensure that there are no loose items strewn on the floor as they might trip on them. Install sufficient lighting in all parts of the house. If you have a two-story house, install railings so they have something to grip on and make sure the steps on the stairs have nonskid grips as well.
- Avoid Fire Accidents
An elderly’s senses also deteriorate with age. Fire accidents might arise when they become too forgetful of a pot that’s boiling, lit candles, or a burned cigarette can even cause a hazardous fire. And if there’s ever one, they might not be quick enough to proceed to safety. Install a smoke detector. Clean up the electrical cords and prevent having too many in one socket. And label appliances clearly with “on” and “off” so as not to confuse them.
- Drug Consumption Safety
As our loved ones get older, they are also prescribed with countless maintenance medications for recurring conditions and diseases. To make sure they take the right drugs all the time, ensure that they’re clearly labeled. Replace old medicines with new ones and make sure you talk to their attending physicians.
- Keep Them Safe from Intruders
Seniors are sometimes the main target of intruder attacks because of their weakness. A home alarm system is a necessity for all homes, regardless of its inhabitants’ ages, in general. Also, make sure that the doors, windows, and any openings are always locked before sleeping. In addition, guide dogs are very helpful not only in fending off attackers but also in alarming anyone when something unfortunate happens to an elderly.
- Stick Emergency Numbers Clearly All Across the House
Displaying emergency numbers all across the house might seem overblown but it’s better to be safe than sorry. In case you or your loved one might need to ask for help, put these emergency numbers up:
- Doctor’s office
- Police department
- Fire department
- Local emergency units
- Next door neighbor
- Other family members and relatives
Prevention is Better than Cure
It’s always better to prevent any onset of illnesses or accidents because when it invades an old adult’s body, it’s going to be too difficult for them to heal or recover. That’s why the best tips to ensure elderly safety is to have them do minor exercises and stick to a healthy diet.
Author Bio: Annah Brooks, driven by the passion for blogging, writes about health, beauty, fashion, food, travel and more. She loves to spend her time travelling. She also blogs at KemperMedical, one of the leading national and global distributor of premium medical products including radiation protection products and radiology/ medical imaging supplies.