OVERALL HOME SAFETY
Perform Regular Maintenance
Maintain and Replace Furnace Filters
Check Smoke Detectors, Fire Extinguishers and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Gutters - Full or clogged gutters can cause water to cross walkways and freeze in colder climates
Clear all walkways of clutter
Remove Throw Rugs
Check for Cords such as Lamp Cords or Extension Cords that cross or are too close to walkways
Check for adequate lighting and add lighting as needed
Move furniture to clear space
Footware - Make sure you loved on has safe, non-skid shoes and slippers
Install railing throughout the home especially along hallways where they may tire and can't use furniture to remain stable.
Watch for areas where water might accumulate and cause slips or falls.
Check all Railings for stability and make sure they are secure.
Grab Bars - In the shower/tub area & near the stool
Throw rugs - May be necessary to soak up standing water. If you need them, make sure they are not too thick and don't slip around on the floor.
Install non-skid material in the bath/shower.
Shampoo & Soap should be within reach and we recommend that they not be on the floor so the senior would have to bend down to pick them up. Consider a shower caddie or a small table.
Floor wax can make the floor slippery. ECO recommends simply a clean floor.
Floors should be clean but not waxed to avoid slips.
Keep commonly used items within reach for the senior. Avoid the use of step stools whenever possible.
Counters - keep them clear so that the senior can put things on the counter and not on the stove.
Remind your senior not to put non-cooking items on the stove.
Fire Extinguisher - Make sure it is charged and easily reachable for the senior.
Remind your senior as to where it is and how to use it.
As with all rooms, clear walkways of clutter, cords and move furniture to improve walking space.
Telephone/Cell Phone - Keep on the night stand and have the cord within reach.
Flashlight - Keep a flashlight in the night stand drawer and make sure the senior knows where it is and can turn it on easily.
Hearing Aids - have a container with a lid next to the bed to store hearing aids when sleeping or resting.
Clear walkways of debris and clutter.
Create ramps to elevated areas.
Install railings for elevated areas. If that is not feasible, try placing sturdy chairs or something that the senior can hold on to.
Garden Boxes - Bending down can cause falls and other health issues. Consider raised garden boxes high enough so the senior does not have to bend down
Hoses - Can cause issues if they are stretched across pathways and pulled around. Buy extra hoses that don't cross walkways and are ready where the watering needs to happen.
Hire someone to do lawn mowing, especially during hot months.
Hire someone to clear snow and ice. So often seniors fall when doing this on their own.
Is my loved one taking their medications at the right time? The correct frequency when applicable?
Is my loved one taking their medications with the right dosage?
Is my loved one taking their medications with food when needed?
Are they able to swallow the pill?
What about drug interactions- Can I be sure this isn't happening?
Are they sure they are taking the correct medication for the right time as prescribed?
If you are worried about possible drug reactions ask yourself these questions:
Is my loved one having severe changes in mood or behavior?
Is my loved one having sever changes with their weight?
Is my loved one having changes in sleeping habits? (If you answered yes to these questions contact the physician about the current medications)
Does my senior see well enough to be behind the wheel?
Do they have: Cataracts, Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration etc.
Are there unexplained dents on the car?
Are there any unexplained dents in or around the garage?
Do they seem nervous about driving?
Does your senior fail to stop at stop signs or stop lights?
Do they drive too slow or too fast?
Talk to the neighbors, if possible, to see if they have observed any unsafe driving issues (turning corners, wide swings, clipping curbs etc.)
Powers of Attorney
Veterans Administration Benefits Documentation
Wills and Trusts
Medication List (From physician)
Medical Power of Attorney
Get with your loved one's physician and pharmacist to make sure you have current medications lists and to look for possible adverse drug interactions.
Do the same with the Neurologist.
Do the same with the orthopedic/ Arthritis, (Rheumatologist) doctor.
Do the same with the Cardiologist.
Send the list of all medications to all the physicians with the medications, frequency, and doses and ask them to check for possible adverse drug interactions and respond to you in writing.
Get confirmation back from all the doctors.
Discard old medications and those no longer needed by taking them to the pharmacy for proper disposal.
Upload the medications list into your Elder Care Organizer Dashboard.