Special Safety Issues Affecting The Elderly And Quick FixesBy Child Safety Specialist Jan 17, 2011 | 11:25:00 amPosted in: Senior Safety
Many seniors today are deciding to live independently rather than in an assisted living community. This is the case with my aunt, who is in her 80’s, and is adamant that she will be staying put in her home for as long as possible. In order to make this a viable option, I discussed precautions that she needed to consider that would help keep her safe as well as prevent accidents.
Two of the most dangerous issues facing us, as we age, are falls and fires. According to statistics, 40% of seniors hospitalized for falls don't live longer than a year. The following are a few safety tips to help prevent these accidents:
• Install grab bars for the shower and toilet.
• Put non-slip mats under all throw rugs.
• Install railings on both sides of all staircases, indoors and out. Be sure the staircases are well lit and have treads to prevent slipping.
• Use night-lights in all rooms, especially the bathroom and bedroom. Keep a phone and flashlight on the nightstand.
• When organizing shelves and closets, place heavy objects on the bottom and frequently used products within easy reach.
• Keep potholders, dishtowels and paper towels away from the stove. When cooking, set two timers in case one is set improperly. Be sure sleeves on clothing are snug so they can’t touch the fire accidentally.
• Have emergency numbers posted in the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom.
• Be sure pathways to exits are unobstructed by furniture or small items.
• Carbon monoxide detectors should be installed on every floor of the house and outside every sleeping area.
If an accident does occur, a prompt response is critical. One of the concerns I had for my aunt is that, living alone, it could be hours or days before someone realizes she is hurt. The ADT Home Health Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) now gives me the peace of mind to know that she’s OK. And, that if she ever is hurt, an emergency responder will be there immediately.
The PERS includes a Personal Help Button, a two-way voice intercom and a 24-hour connection to an ADT Home Health Monitoring Center.
The Personal Help Button is wireless, waterproof, and designed for ease of operation. It can be worn around the wrist or neck and can be easily activated. It also has a two-way intercom built in which allows the senior to speak with a monitoring professional who can immediately assess the extent of the emergency, and maintain a conversation with the senior until help arrives.
The ADT Monitoring Center is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week by professionals specially trained in the needs of the elderly. The signal can be received by the monitoring center from any room in the home, day or night and then the appropriate emergency response agency can be alerted. The Monitoring Center can also notify emergency personnel of any physical limitations and allergies the senior might have. The monitoring professionals can leave follow-up information, like the location of the hospital, with relatives and neighbors.
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