Data suggests that by the year 2030, a fifth of the American population will be comprised of seniors. As the baby boomers age, more and more of their children are taking them into their homes. Living with seniors creates new challenges and pitfalls, and both the home and the individual must be prepared for them. Of course, many seniors are not only capable of living on their own, but would prefer to do so. According to data from the AARP and the National Conference of State Legislatures, an overwhelming 90% of people over 65 want to remain in their own homes as long as possible. Whether they live with their children or on their own, seniors’ homes should ideally meet several accessibility standards.
Seniors and Stairs
Aging people face difficulties with mobility in their homes. In particular, many seniors struggle with negotiating stairs. Fortunately, there is a wide range of assistive technology available, including wheelchair lifts for home, wheelchair lifts for vehicles, stair lifts for home, and door openers. Wheelchair lifts for home allow seniors to go up and down stairs more easily and greatly reduce health risks like falls; elderly individuals are admitted to the emergency room for fall-related injuries every 11 seconds. As more than half of these falls take place at home, it is prudent to outfit the homes of the elderly with the assistive technology they need to safeguard their health.
A senior’s home should have a handicap accessible bathroom. Even for non-seniors, the bathroom is the most dangerous room in the house; the CDC reports that 235,000 people experience injuries in the bathroom every year, and 14 percent of those individuals require hospitalization. Wheelchair lifts for home can help the living spaces of the elderly and disabled meet handicap bathroom requirements. Good bathrooms for seniors are located on the ground floor and are accessible to people with disabilities.
A Safe Home
Aging can present seniors and the people in their lives with new and frustrating challenges to health and safety every day; over two million seniors visit the emergency each year from falls alone. Modern technology, from chair lifts that help them get around the house to medical alert bracelets that let them react to emergencies, can help seniors adapt to life’s new difficulties. Life is full of dangers, elderly life even more so, but seniors should always be able to feel safe in their own homes.