As we age, our risk for accidents and injuries increases. According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of injury death for adults over the age of 65. And each year, more than 2.8 million Americans over the age of 65 are treated in emergency rooms for fall-related injuries. Whether your parents live independently or in assisted living, there are measures you can take to help ensure their safety. Here are ways to keep your elderly parents safe:
Check Their Home for Trip Hazards
Remove throw rugs, cords, and clutter from walkways. Make sure stairways are well lit and have handrails. Consider installing grab bars in the bathroom near the toilet and in the shower or tub.
Help Them Stay Active
Physical activity helps maintain strength and balance, which can help prevent falls. Walking, Tai Chi, and other forms of exercise are great for seniors. Even simple activities like housework or gardening can be beneficial.
Get a Medical Alert Device
Medical alert systems are worn as a bracelet or pendant, and they can be used to summon help in the event of an emergency. Many systems including the best Telus alternative also allow loved ones to check in on their elderly relatives, and some even come equipped with GPS tracking in case of wandering.
With the push of a button, they can instantly summon help in the event of an emergency. The system will automatically call 911 and provide dispatchers with vital information about your parent’s condition. In addition, many medical alert systems come with a fall detection feature that can automatically detect if your parent has fallen and send for help even if they are unable to press the button themselves.
Keep Their Mind Sharp
A cognitively stimulating environment can help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Books, puzzles, music, and social interaction are all great ways to keep their mind sharp.
Review Their Medications With Them Regularly
Medications can interact with each other and cause side effects like dizziness or drowsiness, which increase the risk of falls. Be sure to review all of their medications, prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal with a healthcare professional on a regular basis.
Make Sure They’re Getting Enough Sleep
Sleep deprivation can lead to fatigue and impaired judgment, which increases the risk of accidents and injuries. Help them create a relaxing bedtime routine that will allow them to get a good night’s sleep.
Talk to Them About Their Drinking Habits
Alcohol can interact with medications and cause side effects like dizziness or drowsiness, which increase the risk of falls. It’s important to have a discussion about alcohol consumption with your parents, especially if they’re taking medication to ensure their safety.
Check in With Them Regularly
Whether you live near or far, checking in with your parents on a regular basis is crucial. A quick phone call, text, or email can help you stay up-to-date on their well-being as well as give you peace of mind.
Our parents’ aging is inevitable, but by following these steps, we awarded ourselves some peace of mind knowing we’ve done everything within our power to safeguard them. Prevention is always better than cure. These are just a few things you can do to help keep your elderly parents safe. Implementing even a few of these measures can make a big difference in their safety and wellbeing.