Whoever said there is no place like home really nailed it. Whether you are visiting Hawaii or you are on top of Everest, you will always have a tingling pricking of nostalgia for sweet home. If a relative is suffering from debilitating effects of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, this is a poignant fact to always remember.
Averting Strain to Family Relationships
Most families suffer restrained relations once the advanced effects of the disease start emerging. Dementia is the most traumatizing effect due to possible hazards if your aging relative is at your place.
Forgetfulness and mobility problems require specialized attention but if your elderly dad refuses to go to a nursing home, you should not force him. Instead, take cautionary steps to ensure they age in place surrounded by love and comfort; isn’t that what you would also love if in the same situation?
Creating the Ideal Aging-in-Place Residence
Indeed, you are in luck because there are experts who can help you make any complex renovations depending on your home’s design. Take a look at how you can easily accommodate your ailing relative:
- Increase lighting: Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s eventually affect vision judgement and according to the Alzheimer’s Association, it is crucial to ensure all areas in the house have adequate illumination to help your loved one move around. Before implementing this, you should compare Texas electric rates in order to get the cheapest plan to offset the increase in lighting fixtures.
- Enhance quality of lighting: While you need more lighting in the house, you should also minimize glares, shadows and reflections that cause distraction and curtail mobility. Moreover, you must avoid sudden changes in light in all rooms and instead apply uniform lighting to help your loved one adapt with time.
- Age-in-place structural adjustment: According to the National Association of Builders (NAB), this is the fastest growing new segment in home remodelling. You can hire a contractor to create structures such as ramps to enable wheelchair movements, secure steps and handrails across the building, and install grab bars in your toilet and bathrooms among other features.
- Safety devices: Modern technology has birthed amazing gadgetry that you can use to keep your loved one safe even when away. For instance, touch and voice applications in lamps, TV, interior door among other appliances will help make life easy and safer. They will not have to attempt tinkering with electric appliances, as it is dangerous in their state.
- Monitoring technology: Motion detectors are important around the house in case your loved one wanders outside without your knowledge. Video cameras can also monitor their movements and in turn ensure they are safe all the time.
- Automatic switch off in appliances: Home electric appliances should also have automatic sensors in case your relative forgets all about the sandwich he left in the oven. This will give you peace of mind knowing nothing will go wrong.
Other simple techniques include removal of cluttering and old rugs in the house that can lead to tripping. More importantly make sure your loved one has assistance at all times lest he try to carry out risky tasks.
—In collaboration with Mark Harrison. Mark is a construction consultant in Texas who has previously worked in both government and private sector as an energy auditor. If in Texas, he urges homeowners to compare Texas electric rates to enjoy cost-saving.