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In-Home Care Adaptations | Fedelta Home Care, Seattle WA
March 08, 2022
In-Home Care Adaptations
If your loved one is living with Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, or Alzheimer’s you’ll need to make changes to their living environment in order to keep them comfortable and safe. Even if your loved one is aging healthily, there are alterations you can make to their home in order to enhance their living situation and prevent in-home injuries. There are so many benefits of making home adaptations, including things to help in-home caregivers, because they grant your loved one more independence and a greater sense of well-being.
Clearly, making a home alteration plan is an important part of senior care management, but it can be difficult to know where to start. Here is a list of MS home adaptations and other alterations that have been compiled by our home care Seattle team that will improve your loved one’s quality of life.
MS Home Adaptations
If your loved one is diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, there are many ways you can adapt their home to fit their needs. Some of the symptoms of MS include fatigue, dizziness, tremors, numbness, and difficulty with mobility. Some people require wheelchair assistance. Here are a few projects you can perform around the house in order to make it an easier living environment for someone living with MS.
- Widen doorways and halls for wheelchairs
- Covered outdoor entrances for less ideal weather conditions
- Raise toilets
- A shower chair
- Grab bars in slippery places, like the bathroom
- Lower counters in the kitchen and bathroom
- Heighten space under counters for wheelchair accessibility
- Install front-loading washers and dryers
- Rocker light switches
Find other helpful MS home adaptations in the “home adaptations for seniors” section of this article.
Parkinson’s Home Adaptations
If your loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s, there can be a lot of physical challenges associated with this condition. In order to make your loved one’s home safer and more convenient for day-to-day living, we’ve compiled a list of a few helpful home adaptations.
- Handles or levers—instead of knobs—on appliances
- A designated storage area to make frequently used items easily accessible
- Skid-resistant surfaces for stairs
- Sturdy handrails on both sides of the steps that are about three inches from the wall
- Motion-activated lights in hallways and living areas
- Night lights in the bedroom
- A light comforter and silky fabric in the middle of the bed to make rolling over easier
- Remove slippery tile and hardwood floors
- Remove swivel furniture because your loved one can’t stabilize on such furniture
- Remove low sitting furniture that’s difficult to see—like ottomans—to prevent falls
- Replace less stable furniture with heavy, sturdy furniture that can be used for balance
- Buy chairs with high armrests to facilitate sitting and standing
Dementia and Alzheimer’s Home Adaptations
Those living with Dementia and Alzheimer’s require very different home adaptations than those with MS or Parkinson’s, since so many of the modifications are to alleviate memory issues and risks. Here are a few ways to keep your loved one with dementia safe.
- List all important phone numbers (fire department, police department, and emergency contacts, etc) in a visible place near the phone
- Remove screen and storm doors with automatic locks
- Hide an extra set of keys in a secure location outside
- Tint or decal glass doors
- Lock away dangerous objects and items (knives, razor blades, medications, cleaners, chemicals, and insecticides)
- Remove choking hazards, like refrigerator magnets
- Pad sharp corners on tables and chairs
- Replace glass kitchen items with sturdy plastic plates and cups
- Cover radiators and other metal that can get hot
- Lower hot water temperature in the home to 120℉ or lower
- Install locks on cellar/basement doors
- Tape out stair edges, so they’re easier to see
- Purchase an electric stovetop with an automatic shut-off device
- Fence in the yard with a locking gate to remedy wandering
- Install a motion detector alert system
Home Adaptations For Seniors
Some home adaptations are great for seniors in general. Here’s how you can improve your senior’s home, so they can age in place.
- Roll-in shower
- Stairway lift
- Handrails or grab bars in places, like the bathroom
- Better lighting to help mitigate falls
- Raised dishwasher
- Side by side refrigerator and freezer
- Front control stoves, so they’re not reaching over a hot surface
- Non-carpet flooring or low pile carpet
- Lower thermostats and light switches for those in wheelchairs
- Higher electrical sockets
- Remove rugs
- Secure electrical cords against walls
Home adaptations can be expensive, but that shouldn’t stop you from making these important changes. There are resources to help pay for home modifications, like the Veterans Administration and Rebuilding Together. Take the time to talk to different program professionals and see if they can help you meet your loved one’s needs.