Good Morning Ma & Pa!! 5 Tips on Getting Your Home Ready for Your Aging Parents


grandma_lifts_weightsA majority of us will be making room for our aging parents, or at least one of them, to move in with us.  This post is not about the psychological trauma this transition can cause to us (just kidding mom, you know we luv ya’).  Here’s a few things to consider when preparing your home for the elderly;

  1.  Adequate lighting. Elderly people fall. Make sure there is access to lighting on the path from bed to bathroom. How can we put this delicately? The elderly pee a lot.
  2.  Floor surfaces. If your floors are slippery, add flat area rugs with nonskid mats beneath. If your floors are not slippery, remove area rugs entirely.
  3.  Doorknobs. Arthritis stinks. Doorknobs can be challenging with an arthritic condition.  Replace door knobs with door levers.
  4.  Staircases.  The stairs are very dangerous for the elderly due to their lack of balance combined with that afternoon vodka and tonic they might be nipping at. Both sides of stairs should have handrails and steps should be defined. Where the tread begins should be visible.
  5.  Bathrooms. Install grab bars in the tub and by the toilet (or ter-let as they say in Brooklyn). Consider a comfort height toilet. It’s a few inches taller. Hand held shower heads are helpful if the person has limited mobility.

Be thankful. Many of us would give anything in the world to have our parents in our lives.

 -Deborah Rosenberg

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About Deborah rosenberg

Deborah DiMare is a PETA advocate, was a featured interior designer on TLC, has appeared on NBC’s 'The Today Show' and continually lectures and writes articles on Humane and Sensory Design.