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Maintaining and keeping a home safe from falls

At LifeFone, we recently talked about simple ways to improve the kitchen, bathroom and walkways for mom or dad. Though, sometimes maintaining and keeping a home safe from falls could take upgrades and modifications that would require a professional.

Safe From Falls

Here are some tips for the basement, garage and outside the home.

In the basement:
Add railings for the steps on both sides. Make sure that there are not items stacked in the major areas of the basement, and that the laundry area is not cluttered with baskets that sometimes cannot be seen, or are simply in the way. Add more lighting. Basements tend to be dark, and adding more lighting will help dad or mom see more clearly when entering the basement.

In the garage:
Invest in adequate lighting. The bare light bulb extended from the ceiling needs to be replaced. Add more lighting by the doorway into the house, at the key entry, and around the perimeter of the garage.

Move the storage areas to a reachable height. Everyone keeps things in the garage that aren’t used on a daily basis, but sometimes the storage requires a step stool or ladder.  If possible, lower the storage cupboards to something more manageable for mom or dad. If they cannot be lowered, consider a lift-based storage system that can be lowered when necessary.

On the deck or patio:
If there’s a deck or patio be certain that the surface is even. As deck boards age, they can warp, which leaves an uneven surface to the deck. Change any that need to be replaced. Also check for any nail heads that may be popping up above the flat surface.

Add railings to the deck stairs and edges. If the stairs going up to the deck or the edges don’t have railings, add them.  Make sure that the railings used for the steps are easy to grab onto, as the railings that go around the perimeter of the deck are usually wide.

If the patio is concrete, it is subject to the weather with buckling and cracking. Make sure that any cracks are properly filled, and that the surface is even. That also applies to the driveway.

In both cases, you can change the texture. For the driveway and patio, there are different substances that can be added to concrete to make them less slick. For the deck, adding some roughage to varnish can also help reduce the chances of falling, especially after a rain.

Too often, things are put off. However, at LifeFone, we believe when it comes to the reducing the risk of falling for your dad or mom, now is the time to take a look at the bigger picture.

In conclusion, examine these three things:

  • Make sure there is adequate lighting
  • Remove any clutter
  • Easy access to the things used most frequently

No matter how many improvements you make to a home, there will still be the chance someone will fall.  Ensure that medical help is on the way with a push of a button by complimenting any home improvements with a medical alert system provided by LifeFone.

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