Balance problems are common among elderly adults. Your senior may experience issues with balance for a wide variety of reasons, including arthritis, weakness in the muscles and joints, dizziness, compromised gait, and more. This difficulty with balance can make your parent more vulnerable to experiencing falls that can result in serious injuries. If your parent is dealing with this type of issue, it is important to find ways to improve their safety while still promoting independence.
Use these tips to keep a senior with balance problems safe:
- Remove lightweight furniture, or furniture that is on wheels, from the home. This prevents your aging parent from trying to use these pieces for balance or stability. If they do this, the furniture may fall over or move unexpectedly, causing your parents to fall.
- Ensure that every stairwell in and around their home has a proper banister that is in good condition and can withstand your seniors weight.
- Install grab bars throughout the bathroom to allow your parent to move safely across the floor, get in and out of the tub, sit and stand from the toilet, and perform other tasks more securely.
- Place stable chairs or benches throughout the home to give your parents a place to sit while they perform tasks such as cooking, brushing their teeth, styling their hair, shaving, folding laundry, and more.
- Remove obstacles on the floor that may cause your parent to trip, or requires them to lift their feet, such as uneven floor coverings.
- If thresholds in your parents home are high or uneven, they can pose a tripping hazard. Consider covering it these with a low pile rug that sits flat on the floor on either side and does not move when walked over.
- Encourage your parent to take advantage of the physical support and assistance of a home care services provider. This care provider can help your parent navigate their home and perform tasks more safely.
Getting older shouldn’t have to mean giving up the active, fun lifestyle your parent loves. Even if they are struggling with issues such as mobility problems or balance issues, as a family caregiver it is important for you it to take steps to help your senior stay as active and engaged in the world around them as they want to be, and to maintain independence and autonomy and their daily life.
Introducing home care services into their care routine can be an effective and meaningful way to accomplish this. An in-home senior care services provider can step in when it is appropriate for your parents, and the care you already give them, to fill care gaps, support more independence and autonomy through transportation, and offer companionship and assistance that encourages your loved one to live the life that is right for them while staying safe and healthy.