Our professional relationship with any client always starts with a FREE in-home consultation. This is our opportunity to sit down with the clients and/or their care-givers and assess individual needs, whether they be temporary, long term or permanent changes to the home to ensure safety and comfort.
The majority of injuries to Seniors over the age of 65 are caused by slips and falls in two major areas; the bathroom and the entry and exit from the home. These 2 places are often where we begin our evaluation of the home. Many unsafe conditions in these two main areas are often overlooked until the aging person finally takes a fall on that slippery tile or trips over the bulky throw rug.
Here are a few quick things we lookout for:
- Grab bars should be positioned near the commode and around the entrance and inside the tub / shower.
- Replace typical towel bars that are not designed to hold a person’s weight with safety bars (grab bars) that can be used for emergency support if needed. This includes towel rings and tissue holders. There are many attractive Universal Design options available to replace these items.
- Check the bathroom flooring to determine if it’s slippery when wet. If so, add non slip grip tape to the entry to the shower area and also inside the shower or tub to aid with slip prevention. If flooring is torn or tile is cracked or in poor condition, consider replacing flooring with a non-slip floor.
- Tall thresholds into showers or tub sides are often difficult for elders with mobility issues to overcome. For showers, consider adding a low, flexible rubber threshold ramp that will eliminate the step over in the shower.
- For the tub, consider a Safeway Step® door installed to lower the step-in height. The existing tub side is cut out and a low threshold pass-through is created (with or without a door), all within a day’s time.
6. Finally, check for adequate lighting throughout – the more the better. Add lighting in the shower and around the commode area. The older we get, the more lighting is needed. The goal is to eliminate shadows .
Entry to Home:
- Check the main entry and exit door into the home – ADA guidelines recommend no more than a 1/2″ step-over height for safe entry. What this means is that the typical door threshold becomes a trip hazard for seniors. Consider installing an automatic door seal that drops down to the floor when the door is closed and raises when the door is opened.
- Another option is to install an aluminum non-slip Ez-Access ramp to the entry that gently ramps up to the threshold. The ramps are made of lightweight yet strong anodized aluminum and available in heights ranging from 3/4″ – 6″.
3. Door handles should be lever style to allow easy opening and closing for seniors that have issues with grasping objects. The lever handle can simply be pushed down with the body so they are great for entering the home with your hands loaded with groceries.
4. Add a small shelf at the interior and exterior of home net to the door to place small items, i.e. keys or grocery bag.
5. Add a peep hole viewer at the correct height along with an adequate door bell ringer that sounds in multiple areas of the home. Ringers are now made that are wireless and can be added anywhere in the home.
These are just a few examples of what we can assess during our Free In-Home Consultation. We always customize our services to you! Just like everything else in life–there is no “one size fits all” answer to all challenges. We pride ourselves on making sure we address your specific needs with the best mobility products on the market at the most cost efficient price and with the BEST service available. Please call Home Sweet Accessible Home today at (904) 342-6844 for your FREE In-Home Consultation.