Category Archives: Elderly Home Safety

Home Modifications Help Elderly Age at Home Safely

If you’d like to grow old at home, you’re not alone. Most older adults want to live independently for as long as possible. The problem is that most homes aren’t set up to keep older adults safe as they age.

Research by the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that home modification and repairs may prevent 30-50% of all home accidents among seniors, including falls.

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Need to make your home safer for yourself or an aging parent? Check out these FAQs from the National Resource Center for Supportive Housing and Home Modifications.


Senior Scam Alert: Say NO to door-to-door contractors and handymen

Elderly scam prevention tip “Hall of Fame” contender: If someone knocks on your door and promises to spray a chemical on your roof that will make it last 20 years, just say NO! Even, as these con artists in North Carolina did, they claim to work for Sherwin-Williams…

…the suspects do not spray anything on the roof. After persuading the victims to pay up front, the men never come back to complete the work. …Dias was spotted in the Stanley area where he allegedly scammed an 84 year old out of $2,700.

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Elderly homeowners are favorite targets of travelling “contractors” and “handymen” who “just happen to be in the neighborhood.” The scam varies: sometimes these scammers run off with the cash before doing the work. Sometimes they pretend to do the work. And sometimes they do work that doesn’t need to be done. Either way, it’s fraud and you lose.

Your best defense: If you don’t know the person knocking at your door, do not let them in. Period! No matter how nice they seem. No matter how good the offer. Even if they claim you’ve won the Publisher’s Clearinghouse Sweepstakes! (Especially if they claim you’ve won!) Instead, call the police. If it is Publisher’s Clearinghouse, they’ll have enough money to make bail.


Do Your Aging Parents Need Help at Home? Look for these signs

Do your aging parents need some assistance living safely at home? Here are some signs that it may be time to consider getting extra help:

Are their clothes clean? Are the lights in the house working? Is the heat on? Are the bathrooms clean? Is the yard overgrown? Have you noticed scorched pots?  This is a common one and could be a sign that your parents are becoming dangerously forgetful.

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Other signs that your aging parents need help include neglected housework or personal care, weight loss, or falls.

How you talk to your elderly parents about getting them the help they need is critical! For tips on what to say, how to say it, and what NOT to say, check out his video from Home Instead Senior Care.


Medication Reviews Aid Elderly Fall Prevention

According to the Center for Disease Control, one older adult dies from a fall-related injury every 35 minutes. That’s just about all the statistical evidence anyone should need to take elderly fall prevention seriously. And yet, according to a recent article in the Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants…

Despite the consequences of falls and their preventability, fall risk assessment remains largely ignored by health care providers. A 2003 survey of older US adults indicated that only 37% of them were asked about falls during routine office visits.

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Medication reviews during regular doctor visits can help your doctor assess and modify prescriptions that may increase your risk for falling. Has your doctor reviewed your meds to assess side effects that may cause you to fall? If not, ask!

You can see the JAAPA article about the importance of medication reviews here. And while you’re at it, print out a copy for your doc, too.


Personal Alert Systems: Simple, Effective Technology for Aging at Home Safely

You’ve seen the commercials on television for decades now: An elderly woman is on the floor in her kitchen or bathroom. She’s in pain — and all alone. “Help,” she cries. “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!”

Of course, this iconic commercial is for a well-known brand of personal medical alarm. And although the line itself has become a popular culture punch line, the fact is that personal alert systems are popular because they do one job and do it well…

A solution for the multitude of seniors who need some way to summon emergency help, but don’t want or need a constant “nanny,” may be a personal medical alarm. Personal medical alarms are likely the oldest form of home monitoring technology.

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Perhaps no technology has done more to allow older adults to age at home safely and independently than the personal alert system. If you’re in trouble, you just push a button and a dispatcher notifies a designated contact person.

Today the idea behind personal alarms for the elderly has evolved into monitoring systems for the entire home. These sophisticated systems use various combinations of cameras, motion sensors, and connected devices to track an eldrely person’s every move — from getting in and out of bed, to using the toilet, to taking medication on time. These comprehensive systems may make the most sense for seniors who suffer from dementia or who might forget to push a button.

Click here for helpful information about choosing the right personal alert montoring systems for yourself or an elderly parent or loved one.

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