Homecare: When the weather turns cold and snowy it increases the chances that seniors will have a fall.
And falls can be very serious for seniors. Broken bones and other injuries can lead to months of rehab in a facility instead of home where they want to be. So now is the time to start preparing for the bad weather ahead. Minimizing your senior loved one’s risk of falling isn’t difficult but it does require that you think ahead. If you need some help winterizing your senior loved one’s home you can get help from a homecare provider who can work with you to address any potential safety issues in the home.
The best ways to prevent winter falls are to:
Get Appropriate Footwear
Make sure that your senior loved ones have warm boots with great traction that are easy to get on and off. Look for boots that have Velcro fasteners because laces can be very difficult for seniors who have weak grip strength or arthritis in their hands and fingers. You can also buy slip-on studded overshoes that fit over your senior loved one’s favorite shoes or boots to give them even more traction on slippery ground.
Get Weatherproof Mats
Area rugs and regular mats can be trip and fall hazards for seniors. Replace any mats or rugs by doorways with weatherproof mats that are designed to pull moisture away from the surface and soak it up so that the floors don’t become slippery as ice and snow from boots melts. Put mats outside the door and inside the door to provide a slip-free surface, especially if your senior loved one has to step or down to go through the doorway. You can ask your senior loved one’s personal care at home provider wherein the house would be the best place to put mats.
Cover Entrances and Walkways
Have awnings installed over doorways or have one built over an entire walkway to keep your senior loved one out of the rain and snow. If your senior loved one doesn’t have an attached garage you can have an awning built to cover the sidewalk that leads from the garage to the door. But there should at least be awnings or covers over the doorways so that the area around the doorway won’t get icy and slippery.
Upgrade The Outdoor Lighting
During the fall and winter, it will get dark early and your senior parent may be coming and going in the dark. Upgrade the lighting around the house and make sure that any walkways or paths have appropriate lighting so that your loved one will be able to see the path ahead of them and see any icy spots before walking on them. Solar lights work great for outdoor lighting, but during the winter there may not be enough sun to keep them powered. It’s a good idea to choose battery-operated LED lights or motion sensor lights to light up paths and walkways. Smart lights that can be managed through a phone app are also a great choice so that you or your homecare provider can monitor them and make sure they are turned on when your senior loved one needs them.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Homecare in Glencoe, IL, call the caring staff at LifeCare Home Health & In-Home Services. Call (888) 606-4199 LifeCare serves all of the Chicago Metro Area.
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