As our loved ones age, it’s only natural that we want to do everything in our power to ensure they are comfortable and safe. For many of us, that means providing them with a home within our own. You want to care for them as if they were our children, but sometimes that can be difficult when we have our own family and career commitments to juggle. This can come with its own set of challenges. This blog post will explore some things you can do to ensure your senior loved one is as comfortable as possible when living in your home.
1. Ensure their safety
One of the most important things you can do to make your senior loved ones comfortable is to create a safe environment. This means removing any throw rugs or mats that could cause them to trip and fall, ensuring all stairways and walkways are well-lit, and avoiding clutter blocking their path. You should also install grab bars in the bathroom and any other area where they might need extra support.
If you have outdoor space, it’s also essential to ensure it is safe. This means trimming any overgrown bushes or trees and repairing any broken steps or handrails. Even something as simple as installing a motion-sensor light can make a big difference in preventing falls. Always err on the side of caution when it comes to safety.
2. Reduce noise
Many seniors are sensitive to noise, so creating a peaceful environment in your home is essential. This means avoiding loud music or television, keeping the volume down on the doorbell or telephone, and using gentle lighting. Ask your family and friends to be considerate of noise levels when they visit.
You might also want to consider soundproofing their bedroom or living area to reduce noise levels further. Their bedroom should be a haven where they can relax and get a good night’s sleep. You can install a door perimeter seal to help keep their room silent as sound can enter through the cracks around doorframes. Consider investing in area rugs to help muffle noise if you have hardwood floors.
3. Keep them warm (or cool)
Our bodies can have a harder time regulating our temperature as we age. So you should also take steps to make sure the house is comfortable temperature-wise. This means keeping the home at a moderate temperature and avoiding drafts. If they are sensitive to temperature changes, you may even consider installing a humidifier to help them stay comfortable.
Depending on the time of year, you might also want to consider installing awnings or solar screens. These can help keep the sun from streaming in and heating up the house during summer. In the winter, they can help keep heat from escaping through windows. Some people also find that wearing layers of clothing helps them regulate their temperature more effectively.
4. Ensure your home is accessible
You’ll want to make sure their home is accessible. This means considering whether they need a wheelchair ramp or grab bars in the shower. It would help if you also made sure any doorways are wide enough for them to get through easily and that any cabinets or shelves they need regularly are within easy reach. You want them to be able to move around their home quickly and without assistance.
If you have a two-story home, you may also want to consider installing a stairlift. This can help them get up and down the stairs more easily and without assistance. Some stairlifts even have features like a seatbelt, so they can stay safe while using them.
5. Consider their needs when planning meals
Finally, you’ll want to make sure you are considering their needs when planning meals. This means taking into account any dietary restrictions they may have and making sure plenty of healthy and nutritious options are available. It can also be helpful to have smaller meals more often throughout the day, as seniors sometimes have a harder time digesting large meals.
You should also make sure they are drinking enough fluids. Seniors can sometimes be at risk for dehydration, so it’s essential to ensure they get enough water. You might also want to consider investing in a water filter, as seniors can sometimes be more sensitive to contaminants in tap water.
Making your senior loved one comfortable living in your home takes effort, but it’s well worth it. By taking steps to create a safe and accessible environment for them and paying attention to their comfort needs, you can help them enjoy their time living with you to the fullest. Always consult with their doctor if you have any concerns about their health or well-being.