With the world changing as it is, the family unit is ever evolving. Where people would move from one home to another as they age, this is not always the case now. Families are looking to stay in their homes longer and move less. Due to this, there are more people who are aging in place.
Aging in place is the concept of setting up your home to keep it accessible as you get older. These changes can be made on an as needed basis. If you have immediate needs, then you will have an idea of what changes need to be made now for you. If you are wondering what changes might come up, here are some ideas.
If you have the need for a mobility aid, you will want to make sure that your pathways are wide enough to use it. This could mean doorways, hallways, and other areas are widened for a wheelchair or walker to easily pass through and maneuver. You will need to make sure that the device can move in a 360-degree fashion without impediment.
If a mobility aid is needed, then you will also need to make sure that transitions from room to room are seamless and smooth. You want to make sure there are no trip or fall hazards while moving around your home, as well. Even if you don’t need an assistance device, you will still want to ensure trip and fall hazards are minimized. You can achieve this by taking out the lip around your shower, creating a roll-in environment. Potentially getting a side entrance bathtub. Reviewing the transitions from room to room if the flooring is different materials.
A way to add gradual changes to your space could be by initially making sure your walls are reinforced should you need to add grab bars in your bathroom or around your home. You can place non-slip tiles in the bathroom and set up valves with anti-scald abilities in your faucets. You can also add nightlights to illuminate walkways, review lighting in your rooms to ensure you can see everything, and potentially change the ways that lights are turned on and off.
If you find that you are developing low vision issues, you can add contrasting paint around your home to help you visualize your space better. You can add contrasting paint around doorways to make them stick out. You can also add various paint cues around appliances or fixtures.
It is best to look around your home and see where there are areas that you would need to improve on if you are planning to age in place.