How to Make Your Home Safer Inside
By: John Garcia | Date Posted: December 27, 2022
Table of Contents
Whether you have health issues or want to make your home safer for someone who does, modifying your current setup may be as simple as adding handrails or as complex as installing a home lift. No matter what your goals are, there are modifications anyone can make with a little effort. Focusing on these solutions can make your home safer, especially if you are focusing on the long term.
Evaluate Each Level
If you live on multiple levels in your home, you may want to rethink how you move between levels. In many homes, the bedrooms are on the top floor, the living space is on the ground level, and the laundry is in the basement. Whether you have two levels or five, however, a home lift can help you move between floors quicker and safer. If you want to know more, you can learn about the Stiltz domestic lift online.
Improve the Entryway
The way you get into your home can be hazardous if you have mobility issues, especially if the weather is less than ideal. If someone is struggling to get around, even one step may seem daunting to them. Ensure it is easy to get from the driveway or street to the door. It should be brightly lit, even at night, and there should not be objects in the way. Check the area for uneven spots and consider marking them or fixing them. There should be handrails on every set of stairs, and consider adding ones on either side. If you only have one railing currently, a second one can make a world of difference. This is helpful even if you only have one step that is difficult to navigate. You could add a single grab bar in the area. You can also get ramps that allow wheelchairs to move up and down the area.
Check the Kitchen for Potential Hazards
You can install different DIY kitchen storage and other solutions that can keep you from having to lift, stretch, or bend too much. Things should not hang on the wall. Instead, consider moving utensils and pots and pans to a drawer, or just stack them on the counter. If you have to stretch to reach something, you run the risk of dropping it if you slip. Items you use a lot, like plates and bowls, can be kept on a shelf or drawer that is easy to access. Avoid putting them in different cabinets around your room. Higher shelves should be used mostly for items you do not use that often. You can also find grabbing tools for lighter, non-breakable items, like utensils. You can use the grabbing tool to get an item off the floor without having to bend over. They may allow you to reach items from higher shelves without the need for a stool. Using a stool can present a safety hazard.
Make Adjustments to the Living Room
Take some time to rearrange furniture as needed. Even if you like your current arrangement, it will negatively impact your enjoyment of the living space if you can’t use it effectively. Arrange pieces to meet your needs. If someone will be using a wheelchair or walker, you may want to put more space around each piece or move items to the perimeter of the room. It should also be easy to get in and out of your sofas and chairs. They should not be too low, as it will require some effort to get out safely. You could put a pillow on to add a bit of extra height, but you may find a harder surface is easier to manage. You could even add furniture risers to make the piece taller.
Clutter is a safety hazard for anyone because it can be a tripping hazard if it ends up on the floor. Going through your things and decluttering your spaces by getting rid of some means it will be easier to put away the items you do enjoy regularly. You will also want to make sure any cords and wires are well out of the way. Rugs can become bunched up as you go over them with a walker or wheelchair, so consider picking them up. If possible, roll up all your rugs and put them away so you do not have to worry about tripping. If this is not possible, you will want to make sure you have a non-slip mat under them. The rug should also lie flat and not have fringes or corners that stick up. You can get tape for floors to keep things in place.
Ensure Ease of Navigation around the Bedroom
Ensure you can move around your bedroom easily. You can add more pillows to the bed to ensure you can easily get comfortable. If the bed is not high enough, you can get bed risers or even a railing by the side of the bed. Your essentials should all be next to the bed so you do not have to get up in the middle of the night to get them. Add water, your phone, a charging cord, important phone numbers, and a flashlight. You can also add night lights that are motion-activated in case you need to get up for any reason. That way, they will not disturb your sleep, but they will be there in case you need them.
To dress and undress, consider adding a chair with arms. Sitting down to perform these tasks may help you feel more stable than if you were to stand or even sit on your bed. The arms can help you steady yourself, whether you are standing, sitting, or reaching for something. You can also invest in specialized equipment so you do not need to bend as much. A dressing stick has a hook at one end and it can help you put tops and bottoms on. Some come with shoehorns at the other end, which will hold a shoe in place as you put it down. A grabber tool will help you remove items from hangers.
Thank you for reading!