Is your home adequately equipped to prevent a slip and fall, fire or break-in? Without the proper safety measures in place, you may be putting yourself, or your ageing loved one at risk. Senior home safety should include medical alert devices as well as a number of other preventative measures. Here are some tips for improving your safety inside and outside the home.
Minimizing the Risk of Slip and Falls
Nearly half of the fatal injuries reported among those aged 65 and older are the result of a slip and fall incident. That’s why removing any hazards and adding additional safety features is incredibly important to prevent accidents, especially when seniors live alone. To minimize the risk, inspect carpets, rugs and stair runners for any loose areas or frayed edges. All floor coverings should be tightly secured to the floor and walkways should always be clear from any tripping hazards such as boxes and wires.
Dim lighting can also make it challenging to navigate, so be sure to have adequate lighting outdoors surrounding the perimeter and stairs. A nightlight should also be placed in the bathroom and hallways to provide better visibility at night. Install handrails along both sides of any stairs, and place grab bars in the shower and by the toilet. If the shower floor is slippery, non-slip strips should be added to provide more grip.
Preventing Fire and Burns
Older adults are also more likely to be injured by fire than the average population. Fortunately, these risks can be easily prevented with a little care. This includes having a smoke alarm installed on each level of the home and tested monthly. Seniors should avoid smoking or burning candles inside the house, especially in the bedrooms. Before cooking, the area near the stove should be cleared of any clutter or kitchen towels that could catch fire. Once finished cooking, double-check that the burner is turned off. A fire extinguisher should be kept in the kitchen area at all times. And emergency numbers should always be placed by the phone and made clearly visible.
Preventing Toxic Gas Leaks
CO2 gas is the silent killer. It’s colourless, odourless and can quickly cause dizziness, nausea, and death. If you have any gas-operated appliances in the home, it’s crucial to have a carbon monoxide detector in the area. If the alarm is ever triggered, it’s important you leave the house quickly and then call for help. You should also have your gas appliances checked annually to ensure there are no broken or faulty parts that could cause a gas leak.
Preventing a Break-In
The elderly are often targeted by burglars because many live alone and are vulnerable. Being fully equipped with the proper alarm systems can help prevent a break-in from happening in your home. This includes window alarms, heavy dead-bolts on the entrances, and video-monitoring equipment both inside and out. Seniors should also avoid leaving windows and doors open and unlocked, even when they are home. And refrain from opening the door to strangers or sales personnel.
Other Tips to Stay Safe
All seniors should use a personal medical alert device so they can easily call for help in the event of a fall, break-in, fire, or gas leak. A wearable device like the BoomER Emergency Response System can quickly detect a fall – even when the person is unconscious – and notify emergency services to assist. This personalized medical alert system can be worn on the wrist or around the neck, so it’s always accessible. It features GPS location services too so that help can arrive, even while outside or away from home. With a hands-free 2-way voice communicator, users can talk directly to the response team when needed.
Unlike traditional alert systems, the BoomER device also has instant messaging services so that a friend or relative can be notified via Facebook or email to ensure help is on the way. It’s the most reliable personal security and virtual care device in the world.
Interested to learn more about the BoomER alert? Visit our website today at www.boomeralert.ca to learn all about this all-in-one mobile solution for the seniors, and how it can help to protect you or your loved one.