As our loved ones age, we sometimes find ourselves playing the role of caretaker. Sometimes this means moving an elderly parent or relative into our own home, so that they can be closer to family and receive the care that they need. While it’s very important to make sure that your elderly relative is emotionally secure during this time of transition, it’s just as important to reassess the physical safety of your home. Just like with very young children, home security concerns change when you are making sure your residence is safe enough to accommodate an elderly person.
The most important thing you can do as a loving relative is to provide a space that is comfortable, safe, and private. This is a crucial step for physical and emotional well-being, especially if you are talking about someone who has been living on their own for longer than you have been alive! It’s especially helpful, if your house’s layout permits it, to make sure this personal room is located on the ground level of the home. That eliminates any trouble that might happen if your relative tries to navigate the stairs alone, or in the dark. Make sure that there’s a light switch right by the door and the bed, and that it’s not going to be a difficult hike for them to get to the bathroom.
When preparing the room, be sure that the space is cozy, personal, and has enough room for the supplies that you might need. If your relative is unable to walk, make sure the room and the rest of your house are wheelchair-friendly. If they’re going to require a hospital bed, make sure there are outlets available for any electronic equipment that might be associated. Don’t allow these reminders of old age to dominate the space: encourage your relative to unpack their belongings, and provide extra comfort and support with their prized possessions. If there is an alarm system in your home, make sure that the room you’re relative is sleeping in is an active zone on the alarm, so that there are no errors with motion detectors or alarms going off.
It’s very important to secure the rest of the home, too, not just to prepare the one room. Is there a lot of clutter in your home? You’re going to clear it out of the way to minimize potential accidents. Are the rugs prone to slipping? Tack them down so that your relative doesn’t accidentally fall. Do you have an alarm system that includes the option for a panic button? It’s not a bad idea to make sure that your relative is given one of these, especially in case there is an accident when you are upstairs or outside. A home security system isn’t just for protecting against home invaders: the ability to sound the alarm from inside the house means that 911 and the police could show up fast enough to save your relative in case of an emergency where you weren’t reachable. It’s very important, then, to make a schedule with other family members to make sure there is round-the-clock care if it is needed.
Most important of all, don’t let the stress get to you. This is a very large change in their life as well as yours, but ultimately, you are doing a very good deed in helping out your relative, and the reward is knowing they are spending their time in safety and comfort, as well as in love. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to spend time with them once you have them adjusted to their new home.
Senior citizens deserve the protection of a quality home alarm. Don’t compromise their safety by purchasing one of the inadequate home security systems on the market.