Most seniors only have to worry about household safety if they are physically impaired, but Alzheimer’s disease can cause some unique household safety issues. The memory loss and cognitive issues associated with Alzheimer’s can turn the average household into a dangerous place for seniors. Use the following tips to make the home safer for a senior loved one who is living with Alzheimer’s.
1. Lower Hot Water Heater Temperature
The forgetfulness and reduced feeling in nerves caused by Alzheimer’s can lead to accidental burns. High water temperatures are more likely to burn older adults when they do the dishes or take a bath. You can prevent this by lowering the temperature of the house’s hot water heater.
Consider hiring a professional caregiver if your loved one needs assistance with bathing or other daily tasks. Although it may be challenging to find a reliable, highly rated Hot Springs home care company, families can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.
2. Keep Track of Medications
Access to medications should always be supervised, and they should be locked away when you are not dispensing them. Many caregivers find it helpful to count out medications and check them off a list as their loved one takes them. This approach can allow you to easily tell if your loved one has taken too many medications.
From taking medications on time to managing daily tasks, seniors may need help with a variety of activities. If your senior loved one needs around-the-clock assistance at home, the Hot Springs, Arkansas, 24-hour care professionals at Home Care Assistance are here to help. Our proprietary Balanced Care Method was designed to promote longevity by encouraging seniors to focus on healthy eating, regular exercise, mental engagement, and other important lifestyle factors.
3. Make Appliances Safer
Appliances are one of the biggest dangers at home for seniors with Alzheimer’s. If you have gas appliances, install a hidden gas valve that can be used to turn off the gas when not in use. For most appliances, it is helpful to have an automatic shutoff feature that prevents it from being left on. You can also remove knobs from the stove to keep your loved one from accidentally leaving it on.
4. Lock Away All Chemicals
Even if your loved one knows how to read, he or she may still mistake a bottle of paint thinner for juice or think dishwasher detergent tablets are candy. You cannot rely on labeling or putting dangerous objects on a high shelf, so you need to collect anything unsafe to ingest and lock it up.
5. Install Motion-Activated Lights
Seniors with Alzheimer’s are likely to wander around at night, and they may get confused about the location of light switches. To prevent accidents, install motion-activated lights to ensure your loved one can still see clearly at night.
6. Secure Power Tools and Appliances
Power tools can be dangerous if a senior with Alzheimer’s tries to use them. Saws and carving knives provide an obvious hazard, but even common items like blenders, food processors, drills, or can openers can be dangerous. As long as the object does not have sharp blades, you can remove the power cords or lock them up in a secure place.
7. Change Locks
Making a home safe for a senior with Alzheimer’s requires changes to the locks in the home. The bathroom and bedroom locks should be removed to ensure your loved one cannot lock him or herself inside. Extra locks should be placed on exterior doors to prevent your loved one from wandering. Try to install them unusually high or low.
Every senior living with Alzheimer’s deserves high-quality Alzheimer’s care. Hot Springs, AR, families can rely on the caregivers at Home Care Assistance to keep their loved ones safe while managing the symptoms of the disease. Using our Cognitive Therapeutics Method, our caregivers help seniors regain a sense of pride and accomplishment while slowing the rate of cognitive decline. To learn about our comprehensive, high-quality senior care plans, give us a call at (501) 764-1312 today.