Senior Independence Month - Shutterstock Teodor LazarevFamily Resource Home Care is in the business of supporting independent living and keeping people comfortable, which is most often in their own homes. Allowing people of all ages and abilities to live safely and as independently as possible in their homes is what we strive to do best. 

With National Senior Independence Month occurring in February, we decided to pull together some of our best suggestions on how you can help foster independence and improve the standard of living for you or your aging loved one.

Technology

The reach of technology keeps exponentially growing and has expanded to the point of affecting nearly every element of our daily lives. Though technology can be daunting, it can also be an important resource for seniors or loved ones.

Smartphones and tablets, for instance, are an excellent way to stay connected with family or easily contact emergency services when needed. In addition, there are a number of senior-friendly devices specially designed for ease of usability for older adults, like smartphones or landlines with more visible numbers, or GPS-tracking watches and insoles for seniors with dementia that may become lost or confused.

Keep in mind what your needs are and which forms of technology can improve the life of your senior.

Safety in the Home 

There are many things you can do, big and small, to optimize safety within the home. We recommend keeping a home safety checklist for reference, which can save seniors from life-threatening falls, and promote safe and independent living. 

A few of the items on this list include making sure rooms have adequate lighting to increase the visibility of objects and furniture, decluttering the home to free up space and ease mobility, installing handrails or grip surfaces in bathrooms where slipping and falling is very common, fixing up any repairs you’ve been putting off, adjusting the placement of rugs and carpets to prevent tripping on corners, and many, many more.

This can even extend to awareness of food and drug interactions, which can affect health as well as mobility and balance.

Emergency Preparedness

Taking preemptive measures to ensure readiness in all circumstances is a crucial element to maintaining independence. While safety in the home accounts for occurrences of everyday life, emergency preparedness can not only save lives but aid in safety and wellness when emergency services may be overwhelmed or unavailable. Check out our article on emergency preparedness to learn more about what you can do to prepare in the event of an incoming disaster. 

Infection Prevention

Infections are an ailment that we all deal with at some point or another. There are, however, some measures that can be taken to be aware of or even prevent certain types of infection. Learn more about infection prevention, and why it is especially important for older adults.  

Healthy Routines

Maintaining daily healthy routines is important for people of all ages. Not only does this improve mental health, which directly affects physical health, but routines like adequate sleep, food safety, hydration, and eating well can positively impact physical well-being. Family Resource can provide invaluable support in maintaining healthy routines for seniors, which can be much more effective with one-on-one care through the help and guidance of a home care professional. 

Staying active can prevent accidents and promote independence by keeping the muscles moving and alive. Regular physical activity can also boost self-confidence, making activities more easy to engage in.  

General Ways to Improve State of Mind

On a lighter note, there are also many simple things you can do to generally improve your standard of living, which in turn positively affect mental and physical health. These can include getting a daily dose of laughter, regularly seeking hugs and physical touch, or keeping houseplants for aesthetics and air quality.

Independence in everyday activities isn’t something solely reserved for the young, healthy, or otherwise capable. Family Resource Home Care firmly believes in these actionable steps which can be taken to improve the well-being of those who may need assistance in other areas of their lives. It’s something we see on a regular basis with the clients we aid. It may take some preparation or planning, but we believe in the importance and effectiveness of taking the time to cultivate senior independence. 

 

Photo Courtesy: Shutterstock