As your parents grow older, there may come a time in your life when you begin to prepare your home according to your parents. It would be your turn to provide them with a safe place like they did when you were small.
From preparing their bedroom to putting anti-slip carpet or mats on your staircase and bathroom, the house needs to be modified for the elderly parents so that it becomes a safe place for them to live in.
While you prepare your home for your aged parents, you may feel overwhelmed or emotional but it is better to take precautionary steps as soon as possible. Living with your parents is such a great blessing, so make sure you make the most of it by spending quality time with them. Most importantly prepare yourself to accept them with all of your heart and treat them with love and affection.
Following are some useful tips to prepare your home for your old parents
1. Accommodation should be according to their flexibility
Your house should be welcoming to them, so, therefore, you need to adjust few things that may create trouble for mobility. Remove unnecessary hurdles like few home decors that might come in their way, there should be nothing blocking their way from their room to bathroom.
If you are already on the 1st floor shift them to a room near the entrance and close to the bathroom. If you have a living arrangement on the 2nd floor, a wide staircase could be helpful or if your parents are too old or wheelchair-bound, a wheelchair ramp or stairlift would be needed. The appliances should be user-friendly and you can help them to use on their own. A wall bar around the house can be of great support.
1. Proof your bathroom
Bathrooms are the most precarious place in a house. Accidents can happen within an eye-blink. Especially after a bath, the place can become moist and condensation can compromise sight.
Therefore it is important to elder proof your bathroom.
- Keep anti-slip mats on the floors specifically near the bath area.
- Install raised toilet seat so that it will be easy for them to sit.
- Install wall bars near the toilet seat and bath area.
- You can arrange a sit-on in the bath area with a moveable hand shower.
- The wall bars should have proper brackets to bear the weight of the person.
- Remove unnecessary items from the bathroom.
- Install easy locks and keep and spare key outside too.
- Remember that they are inside and keep an eye on the time.
2. A room with a view
A beautiful view outside the window can keep their mind fresh. Seeing people outside and watching kids playing could be engaging. Also, a sun-adjacent window will allow the sunlight into their room keeping the area ventilated.
It is difficult to bring them outside every day if they are very senior, the light will ensure their vitamin D level is right. The inside view of the house is equally important, they should be able to see your activities around the house. If you have kids, your parents should be able to enjoy their movement.
3. Smooth their way
Rearrange your furniture to smooth out your parents movement. Keep the passage from their room to washroom clear. Don’t put heavy furniture or floor decoration in their path. Don’t put floor cushions or mats on tiles. It would be good if your house is carpeted. Keep the couches close to the wall and a side table for their use. Arrange a sofa set or couch that is at a height so they could sit easily.
If you have a pet or kid, their stuff should be in place. The last thing you want your parents to tripping over a pet or toy. Things used on daily basis should be kept available. Pets should be secured in their designated area. Your house should be well-lightened, dim lightning can compromise your parent’s sight and can cause an accident.
4. First Aid box should be stocked up
First aid should be in stock so that you don’t have to run around for basic medical items. Bandages, cotton crepes, disinfectants, and basic over-the-counter ointments and relaxants should be present in your home to give the basic treatment before the expertise arrive.
If your parents are on life-saving drugs, keep them available all the time. Medicines should be organized according to the prescription. If your parents are immune-compromised then you should allow limited guests around them, get rid of all the things that can cause them damage. Make sure they don’t miss doctor’s appointment and all their medical files are updated.
Emergency numbers should be put on their dial list if you are not around, inform your trusted one if you are away. It would be great if you will arrange a caregiver for them. Keep an eye on them or visit their room at the night. It’s good to be alert than to be sorry.
5. Install user-friendly appliances
The technology has advanced a lot, you would find the appliances that are trendy but are very tough to operate. It would be very difficult for seniors to learn how to function. Try to install items that work on one-touch or are easy to run. A television with their favorite shows is a must-have in their room.
6. Make them feel at home
Your vibe should be very welcoming, they should know that you are not bothered by their presence rather you are very happy to have them with you. Discuss their likings and how they want their stuff to be arranged before moving in with you.
Décor a wall with your parent’s favorite pictures, install furniture of their taste. Talk to them when you are back home, ask about your day, tell them about yours. Know if they are having any problems or how are they liking the new neighbor. Ask them what they want to eat for dinner. Tell your children to spend time with them. Make them feel like they were always wanted here and they are very important to you.
Happy parents is a blessing
The idea to keep your parents secure would require a lot of modifications. Not only you are doing changes in your house but also you have to design their activities to keep them healthy and active. Support your parents in staying attached to the world. Loneliness can cause depression among them and if they are not actively engaged in the world they might lose interest in it too.
Read books to them, talk about the current affair. Take them for a walk around the society, let them meet the neighbors. Allow them to have friends gathering in the backyard. Make them join some club where they can do fun activities like talking to their friend, playing board games, dancing with their partners. Make them participate in planning a party at home, let them decide the menu for the evening. Love them with all your heart and make them live to the fullest.