5 Common Risks To Seniors’ Safety At Home
Even while our homes are comfortable and familiar places, they can still pose a number of hazards and safety issues, particularly for the elderly. In fact, data show that millions of persons over 65 are treated in hospital emergency departments for injuries sustained in their own homes.
Accident Prevention By Understanding the Dangers
At Care At Heart, we have a better understanding of the unique risks that elders encounter at home, as well as the actions that may be taken to mitigate these risks. Our Darby in-home care caregivers make it a priority to ensure the safety of the homes in which we work, as well as to educate patients and their families about some of the most pressing risks so that they may address them and make their homes safer.
Seniors’ Most Common At-Home Safety Risks
Falls are by far the most common cause of injury among persons 65 and older, and many of them occur in the comfort of one’s own home. According to the National Safety Council, nearly a third of seniors have a fall-related accident each year, with 70% of these falls occurring at home. Because falls are the leading cause of death among seniors, they must take extra care to account for physical changes associated with aging, such as deteriorating hearing and vision, bone density loss, balance concerns, and more. You can take the following precautions:
- Remove or tape down potential tripping hazards such clutter, tiny pieces of furniture, cords, carpets, and frayed carpet.
- Rearrange furniture to create sufficient walking room in all places.
- Ascertain that all areas of the house are well illuminated.
- To increase balance and strength, exercise and physical therapy are used.
- On smooth surfaces, always wear non-slip footwear and mop up spills right away.
- Instead than grabbing furniture or walls, always use a cane or a walker.
- Install safety bars in showers and near toilets, as well as rubber mats in showers and on bathroom floors, to make bathrooms more secure.
- Consider wearing a specialized alarm, like as a bracelet or necklace, to inform medical personnel in the event of an emergency, particularly if you’ve fallen before
Fires are a danger in any home, but they are especially dangerous in homes where elders may require oxygen. Always keep fresh batteries in smoke detectors, never let candles or fires burn in an empty room, avoid open flames or smoking near oxygen tanks, check appliances for frayed cords, and leave at least three feet of space between heaters and anything that can burn, such as clothes, furniture, or drapery, to reduce the risk of a fire.
3. Chemical poisoning
Accidental poisoning can occur in a variety of ways, and it’s especially dangerous for seniors who use a variety of medications. Install carbon monoxide detectors near all bedrooms, never heat a home with a stove or oven, avoid mixing cleaning products such as bleach or ammonia, keep medications organized and labeled in their original containers, read labels in a well-lit room, and ensure that medications are used as directed.
4. Abuse and Criminal Activity
Even in their own homes, seniors might be susceptible targets for ill-intentioned wrongdoers. Protect the home by installing locks on doors and windows and never allowing strangers enter the house, especially if a senior is alone. Families can also talk to their loved ones about prevalent forms of fraud that target the elderly, as well as any “deals” or “prizes” they may have discussed over the phone or via email, or when a senior feels forced into making a purchase or signing a contract.
5. Products for the public
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, about one million adults over the age of 65 visit a hospital emergency room each year for product-related injuries. To reduce the risk of injuries caused by consumer products, always make sure that items in the home are up-to-date and do not pose a hazard, check for product recalls, and address any issues posed by products that can commonly cause injuries, such as stairs, ramps, floors, furniture, step stools or ladders, exercise equipment, bathtubs and showers, desks and shelving, and clothing, among others.
It is critical to prepare a home to fulfill the needs of senior individuals in order to reduce dangers and keep them safe. Contact Care At Heart Home Care today if you have any questions regarding keeping your home or the home of a loved one safer, or if you’d like to learn more about our in-homecare services.