Now is the time to better prepare your family members and loved ones to be safe and stay safe as fall and winter seasons approach us.
Use this quick guide for keeping seniors safe at home:
Stairways and Halls
- Foyer has a nonslip entrance.
- Steps are in good condition and are free of objects.
- Steps have nonskid strips or their carpeting is securely fastened and free of fraying or holes.
- There are smoke detectors in hallways and near sleeping areas.
- Hallways are equipped with night-lights.
- Sturdy handrails are on both sides of stairways and are securely fastened.
- Light switches are located at the top and bottom of stairways and at both ends of long hallways.
- Inside doors do not swing out over stair steps.
- There is enough overhead space in the stairway to avoid bumping your head.
- Room entrances do not have raised door thresholds.
- It is easy to see the leading edge or nosing of each stair tread while walking down stairs. (Use tape of contrasting color if not.)
- Stairways and hallways are well lighted.
- Electrical cords are placed along walls, not under rugs, and away from traffic areas.
- Chairs and couches are sturdy and secure.
- Chairs and couches are not too low or too deep to get in and out of easily.
- Chairs and couches have full arms to aid in sitting or rising.
- The light switch is located near the entrance.
- There is enough space to walk through the room, leaving clear passageways for traffic.
- Furniture that might be used for support when walking or rising is steady and does not tilt.
- The bathtub or shower has a nonskid mat or strips on the standing area.
- Bathtub or shower doors are glazed with safety glass or plastic.
- Grab bars are installed on the walls by the bathtub and toilet.
- Shower has a hand-held showerhead with flexible hose.
- The towel bars and the soap dish in the shower stall are made of durable materials and are firmly installed.
- The shower or tub has a single-lever, ant scald mixing faucet.
- Bathroom flooring is matte-finished, textured tile or low pile commercial carpet (not throw rugs or bathmats).
- The bathroom has even lighting without glare.
- The light switch is located near the door.
- The bathroom door opens outward.
- The bathroom has a safe, supplemental heat source and ventilation system.
- The outlets are ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) that protect against electric shock.
- A night-light is available.
- If needed, an accessible shower or tub can be installed.
- You keep a lamp or flashlight within reach of your bed. Periodically check the batteries.
- A night-light is used to brighten the way to the bathroom at night.
- You have plenty of room to walk around the bed.
- You have an adequate-sized nightstand or small table for the telephone, or cell phone, glasses and other important items.
- There is a sturdy chair with arms where you can sit to dress.
- The bedroom has wall-to-wall, low-pile carpeting or a smooth-surface floor covering.
- You use a bedroom on the first floor of the home if necessary.