How to Make Your Home More Accessible Today

Posted on: March 7th, 2016 by CarePro Blogger

accessible home

It is common knowledge that as we age, we will most likely lose some degree of mobility, making it vital that we start preparing our home or the home of our aging loved ones to be more accessible.  For this reason, CarePro Health Services wants to make you aware of the accessibility dangers lurking in your home and how to address each danger today!

Accessibility Dangers on Stairs

The most obvious accessibility improvement to make is accommodations for access to your home and access to all floors in the home, which typically involve anywhere from five to fifteen stairs.  Here are the areas to watch and how to make them more accessible:

  1. Entering and exiting your home safely is a key focus when considering a loss in mobility. Start thinking about how a modular ramp or wheelchair lift would work with your current home entry setup.
  2. If you live in a two-story, split-level or multi-level home, you may need to start looking at stair lifts to help you or your loved one get from one floor of the home to the next.

Accessibility Dangers in the Kitchen

The two most dangerous rooms in any home are the kitchen and the bathroom.  In the kitchen, you’ve got to watch your stovetops, counters and shelving for these reasons:

  1. Stovetop knobs are often placed in the back of a stovetop, which forces your loved one to reach across hot burners to access them. Reduce your risk for injury by transitioning to a stovetop that has front panel knobs and push-buttons.  For individuals using a wheelchair, consider placing a mirror above the stove to easily check on food as it is cooking without having to remove them from the stovetop.
  2. The common ceramic or marble countertops can become very slick when wet with water or juice from chopped fruits and vegetables. Be sure to have rubberized cutting mats or cutting boards that will prevent you from an accidental slip of the chopping knife when doing meal prep.
  3. When it comes to shelving, consider transitioning to shelves that slide out or installing a Lazy Susan to avoid awkward stretching to reach an item that is too high.

Accessibility Dangers in the Bathroom

In the bathroom, you will need to prepare for added stabilization and protection from slick surfaces.  Here are the main areas to look at when transitioning your bathroom:

  1. When it comes to sinks, you may want to consider a wall-mounted sink that allows easy access for those in wheelchairs.
  2. For tubs, consider a loss in coordination that would require installation of grab bars and shower seats, and possibly even installation of a roll-in shower.
  3. Toilets may seem like a fixture that is already easy to use, but a raised seat on the toilet would put less pressure on the leg muscles and joints when in use. Safety rails are also a great stabilizer for someone with decreased mobility.

At CarePro Health Services, it is our mission to keep you healthy, safe and comfortable in your home for as long as possible.  We hope that we have helped you identify some dangerous areas in your home and provided tips to make them safer as you age.  If you’re ready to move forward with home accessibility, call CarePro Home Medical to help you find the best solutions for your home.

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