Advancements in modern medicine have meant that people are living longer, the percentage of older people is likely to keep growing over the next few decades. But, the good news is that it’s not just life extension, it’ quality of life that is being maintained. As many as 75% of people over 85 are still living at home!
Of course, these people deal with the issues associated with aging, such as stiff joints and arthritis. They can make everyday tasks appear challenging. Fortunately, you can implement a few easy upgrades and make their lives easier.
You need to have balustrades to ensure that anyone, older or younger, doesn’t fall as they come down the stairs and injure themselves. This is even more important when people are aging and balance can be more of an issue.
However, you don’t have to stick to the traditional balustrades, glass balustrades are a great option to maintain light while offering the necessary protection.
There are several key places in a home where handrails may be useful. The number of handrails you fit will depend on how good their mobility is. You should put one in the bathroom to assist with using the toilet, one in the shower, and some near the front and back doors.
It’s worth watching your aging relatives to see where they would most benefit from a handrail.
You can easily widen a doorway a little by replacing the hinges with ones that are offset. They allow the door to move away from the frame, effectively creating 2 inches of extra clearance. This is perfect for people in wheelchairs or using walkers around the home.
If your aging relatives are suffering from arthritis they will prefer the modern flat rocker switch that can be pressed with any part of their hand. Grasping a toggle style switch can be difficult and frustrating. That means they are likely to leave the light off which will increase the likelihood of a fall.
You can even choose rocker switches with small lights, making them easy to spot in the dark.
The small knobs on cupboards can also be difficult to grasp. Again, these can be replaced with a ‘C’ or ‘D’ shaped handle which is much easier to grasp.
It’s easy to do, surprisingly cheap and effective.
The oven should be fitted inside a cupboard, allowing it to be operated at chest height. That’s much easier than bending with a stiff back. You can do the same with washing machines and dryers. Create a base that lifts them off the floor and outs them at a better height for daily use.
The Rolling Kart
While your aging relatives may like the idea of a go-kart this rolling kitchen kart is a more practical solution. Food can be prepared on it and they can use it as a walker while keeping everything they normally use in one place, ready for action.
It doesn’t take a lot to cater to the older generation and make their lives easier.