Almost nine out of 10 people over the age of 65 want to enjoy their retirement years at home. If you are among them, you likely have a variety of reasons for staying put. You may have been there for years and put down roots. Or, you may have gotten so used to the locale that anywhere else would seem foreign and hard to navigate. Plus, you probably have many relatives and friends nearby. Not to mention all the relationships you have established with healthcare providers.
Physical therapists understand how challenging it would be to put this all behind you. However, there is more to aging in place than just carrying on as you are. You will need to adapt your home to the necessary changes ahead so as to stay secure and comfortable well into your senior years.
Start with a Safety Check
Any modifications you make should address the dangers that are present in your home. Indeed, many of those are the same regardless of your age, such as a faulty water heater, a clogged chimney, or smoke detectors that don’t function properly. So, make sure those kinds of dangers are addressed, as well as the ones that may be related to your future health condition. You may need to call in the help of a physical therapy or occupational therapy professional to help you make home adaptations to accommodate your needs.
This should be a primary focus, as getting up and down stairs will be more challenging in the coming years. You may need to consider a ramp at the entranceway. Doorways inside the house can be made more accommodating with the installation of expandable hinges.
Taking steps to prevent falls is as crucial as improving mobility. The main focus is usually on the kitchen and bathroom, both of which can be especially hazardous, mostly due to moisture. Slip-free flooring is an ideal choice for both areas. Furthermore, safety modifications such as grab bars, shower chairs, or a walk-in shower make keeping yourself clean a much less risky venture.
Make a Plan
Once you have scoured the house for potential dangers and other problematic sources, jot down a list of all the needed renovations, prioritizing the most important ones. You may need to interview contractors and apply for building permits if you’re making any significant structural changes to your home. All of this takes time, so make sure to schedule for it.
With your safety addressed and secured, you can enjoy your retirement more. Once you’ve taken these measures to accommodate your home to your needs, you can enjoy your retirement in the safety and security of your own home, surrounded by your friends and loved ones. There is no need to pick up your roots and move to a strange and new location.
If you need help getting your home prepared for your golden years, go to physical therapy, like physical therapy from Mid-Atlantic Spinal Rehab & Chiropractic, for help. They can help you get back to your routine after an illness or injury. Call today to learn more.