Caring for a loved one with Alzheimers can be a challenging experience. In-home health care helps ease this stress and ensures that your loved one receives the assistance they need on a regular basis. If you’re arranging home health care for a family member with Alzheimers, there are certain things you can do beforehand to make sure your home is ready. These tasks will make it easier for the home health aide to do their job and reduce the risk of your loved one injuring themselves.
Make Bathrooms Safer
Bathrooms have slippery surfaces, which increase your loved one’s risk of falling. Install grab bars in the shower or tub to give your loved one better support while bathing. Put a non-slip mat in the bottom of the tub to help prevent slips and falls. Place a shower bench in the tub or shower to give your loved one somewhere safe to sit while bathing, and install a handheld showerhead for easier use.
Maintain Clear Walkways
Make sure that your loved one has a clear path through the home. Remove any clutter that is blocking these walkways, and rearrange furniture if necessary to give your loved one more space to move around. This helps reduce the risk of having your loved one bump into or trip on objects and get hurt. You might also want to get rid of throw rugs, which can be a tripping hazard for elderly people.
Install Door and Window Locks
All of the doors and windows in your home should have locks on them to prevent your loved one from wandering off and becoming lost. Doors to the outside should have deadbolt locks on them that can only be opened with a key. Although your loved one will have a home health aide to keep an eye on them during the day, it’s important to make sure they can’t wander out of the house at night or when they’re home alone.
Install Childproof Locks
Part of Alzheimers care is making sure that your loved one can’t access potentially dangerous items, such as medications. Install childproof locks on medicine cabinets and anywhere else you keep items that aren’t safe for them to have, such as knives, chemical cleaning products, pest control products or candle lighters.
Making sure your home is well-lit helps reduce the risk of your loved one falling. Keep a nightlight on in hallways and bathrooms, and put one in your loved one’s bedroom as well. If your loved one will be going up and down stairs, the entire staircase should be well-lit to lower the risk of falling.
Making these changes will provide you with peace of mind that your loved one is in a safe environment. It also makes things easier for the home health aide, which helps ensure that your loved one will get the best Alzheimers care possible.