How to Care for an Elderly Parent at Home
If you have made the decision to move your elderly parent into your home, know that you are not alone. In fact, one out of every four adult children have an elderly or disabled parent living with them. Most children cannot imagine their parent living in a nursing home or assisted living facility, so they take them in so that they can care for them themselves. With this move there are some things that you may need to change to make your house safe and convenient for your elderly parent. Here is some things you need to know regarding how to care for an elderly parent at home.
Inspect Your Home
Before your parent even moves into your house, you need to give it the once-over to ensure it is a safe place for them to live. A room that is close to a bathroom and with a lot of open space for them to move around is the best choice. Basically, you want to look for rooms that are cluttered with furniture, which make moving around for the elderly, difficult. Make sure that all smoke detectors and the carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. Rugs and carpets also need to be secured to the floor. Loose carpets and small rugs can upturn causing a person who is unsteady on their feet to trip. Lastly, make sure that all cords are tucked away or secured properly so they will not be a slip and fall hazard.
The bathroom is the one room in the home that is responsible for the majority of injuries. It is for this reason that you should consider installing grab bars near the toilet and in the bathtub. Elderly parents often need help getting in and out of the tub, A grab bar should be installed in the bathtub as well as beside the toilet. Non-skid pads should also be installed in the bathtub and it would also be a good idea to install a couple in front of the bathtub area to prevent slips and falls.
Elderly parents that live in your house usually get up at least once during the night to use the bathroom. This is why it is important to install nightlights in these areas. For instance, consider putting one inside their bedroom, one in the hallway and one in front of the bathroom. Also, place a nightlight in the kitchen in case they want to get a drink of water at night.
These are just a few suggestions that will make your living space safe for a parent no matter how old they are!