If you love your home and want to say out of the nursing home or assisted living, here are some steps that you can take:
1) Make the necessary safety changes in your home.
Be proactive about preventing accidents. There are three places accidents are most likely to occur. So let’s focus on each one.
Nothing is more dangerous that your old bathtub. If you love your bath, then invest in the best safety equipment on the market—a walk in tub. Sure, you can install a transfer bench in your tub, but it takes up space, and it’s still awkward sitting down in the tub. You won’t have that problem anymore if you get a walk in bathtub. The seat is built right in. You don’t have to maneuver over the side of the tub. You just walk in, close the door and fill the tub for a wonderfully relaxing soak. You can even add whirlpool and/or air jets to experience the advantages of hydrotherapy treatments.
If you are having difficulty with the height of your toilet, install a raised seat. It will make sitting and getting up easier. Also, add grab bars to the walls near the toilet to assist you.
Replace slippery flooring or paint the floor with a non-skid finish, such as Skid Safe. That way when water gets on the floor, you won’t slip and injure yourself.
The most common kitchen hazards are easy to avoid. Make sure that curtains and towels aren’t anywhere near your stove top. Never wear loose fitting long sleeves when you are cooking. And never climb up on anything that wasn’t designed for you to stand on—that includes chairs. Kitchen step stools are designed to carry your weight as you reach for things, so they won’t tip over when you take something down from a high shelf. A small step ladder is the next best alternative.
If you have a home with more than one level, you have stairs. Make sure that carpet isn’t loose. If the stairs are wood, use tape in a contrasting color at the front edge of each stair. It will help you see each step so you are less likely to catch your foot or miss a step.
If you only have a railing on one side of the stairs, install a rail on the other side as well. This allows you to always have a rail under your stronger hand.
2) Take an active role in maintaining your health.
Activity is vital if you want to remain vigorous. Eat right and exercise. These two things will help you stay in your home more effectively than all the medications a doctor can prescribe. Get involved with a charity. Stay involved in life!
3) Enlist the right assistance.
Independence doesn’t mean having to do everything yourself. Often independence involves bringing the right people in to help you with the things that are overwhelming you.
Do you have family members who worry about you? Then sign up for a telephone assurance plan. You can arrange for a daily check-in call and give instructions for who should be notified if you can’t be reached.
Hire a companion to help with the household chores. a companion can’t provide medical assistance, so if you do need a little more help, a caregiver is the next step up. In some states, they must have CNA training, while in others this isn’t required. And there may be times when you may need a visiting nurse to provide in-home care for a medical situation or rehabilitation.
You can take control of your future. By taking these steps you increase the probability that you will be able to enjoy the rest of your life in your own home.