Caring for an elderly parent is a situation faced by an increasing number of adult children in America today. In fact, according to a recent survey, 15% of adult children are now providing some sort of care for a parent between the ages of 65 and 74, with that number rising sharply to 33% for those with a parent aged 75 or older. Adult children who have elderly parents with health or mobility issues that require around-the-clock care often decide to bring their elderly parents into their own homes in order to provide a higher degree of care while still being able to care for their own families. But this can be problematic, especially if the adult child's home is not a good fit for the elderly parent. If you have welcomed an elderly parent into your home or will be doing so in the future, here are some relatively inexpensive home remodeling projects that can help your elderly parents feel safer and more comfortable while staying in your home.
Easing access issues
If your parent or parents suffer from a disability or mobility issue, just getting them into and out of your home safely can be a major problem, especially if your home has a front porch or walkway with several steps. To address this as inexpensively as possible, consider:
- using an alternate access point to your home, such one from a patio or garage where there are fewer or even no steps to deal with
- having a temporary or permanent ramp installed with sturdy hand rails and non-skid surfaces
- adding handrails and non-skid surfaces to the existing entryway having the fewest number of steps to traverse
Making the bathroom safer
Keeping elderly parents safe in the bathroom is another area of your home that will likely need to undergo some simple changes in order to prevent slips and falls that could result in serious injuries. These include:
- replacing an existing toilet with a taller one, especially designed for use by the elderly and disabled
- installing grab bars at key points, such as by the toilet and near the shower or bath
- replacing the existing tub with a walk-in style
- replacing slippery tile or stone floors with flooring designed to offer a slip-resistant surface
Adding stability throughout the home
Falling is a common problem for many elderly people, especially if they suffer from health conditions with symptoms such as dizziness, take medications that cause drowsiness, or have mobility issues. To help your parent or parents feel safer when moving about your home, consider having grab bars installed along hallways and replacing hard flooring with a low profile carpet, such as a Berber to provide a less slippery walking surface.
Contact a company like Alleva Construction, Inc for help remodeling your home.