Age in Place: 10 Bedroom Safety Tips

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As we age, the home becomes more than just a living space. It becomes a sanctuary where seniors spend the majority of their time. However,with age comes an increased risk of accidents like falls which can occur —especially inside the home.

Ensuring safety in the home for seniors is crucial tomaintaining their overall well-being, circulation, and independence.

Home safety is of utmost importance to your overall health and wellness, and the bedroom is one of the most significant locations when itcomes to safety. Between not having the right support when getting out of bed to getting dressed, there are potential ways seniors can fall in their own room!

But, taking proactive measures can help prevent accidents. Below are 10 updates you can do to your bedroom to make it as safe as possible to prevent falls

1. Touch-Activated Lights

Make sure to have adequate lighting. Not enough light can cause falls. One convenient way to upgrade the lighting in the bedroom is to install touch-activated lights. These types of lights are great for anyone with dexterity issues and prevent issues with turning a knob or pushing in a buttonto turn on a light.

2. Automatic Night Lights

Getting out of bed in the middle of the nightcan be dangerous. An automatic night light or a motion censored one will makeit easy to illuminate the room and watch where you’re walking.

3. Use a Chair to Get Dressed

Have a sturdy chair in the room so you can sitdown and get dressed rather than stand and risk falling.

4. Remove Clutter Laying Around

To prevent tripping, remove any clutter likerugs, wires, and clothes. Keep clear pathways to keep from encountering any obstacles.

5. Clean and Re-organize Closets

A good tip when doing this is to make sure that all frequently worn clothes within reach and make sure to not put anything up too high or too low which would make it too hard for a senior to reach.

6. Correct Bed Height

Getting in and out of bed can be a great concern. If you find that the bed is too high, consider placing the box springon the floor so its lower to the ground. According to the NCOA (link: https://www.ncoa.org/adviser/sleep/bedroom-safety-guide/) mattress height of 18–23 inches is considered safe for most older adults.

Have the opposite problem? Bed lifts are agreat option to use.

Pro Tip: If you push your bed to the corner, this will help keep you from falling off oneside of the bed.

7. Grab Bars

Installing grab bars next to the bed helpsgetting out of bed easier, especially if you do not have a strong upper body.You can use these grab bars to pull yourself up and if you install themelsewhere in the bedroom, you can use them for balance.

8. Have a Phone Nearby

Having a phone next to the bed on a night stand makes it sothat you don’t need to worrying about getting out of bed quickly to grab the phone. Keep this phone readily available and if helpful, print out a list ofimportant contacts and keep it next to the phone.

9. Update Your Smoke Detector

Make sure there is one installed in your bedroom. Get one with a 10 year battery and a low false alarm rate.

10. Replace the Mattress

A firm mattress is preferred for older adults. Agood mattress contributes to better sleep by reducing stress and physicaldiscomfort. It improves your quality of sleep, too.

It is important to take into account all of therooms in your home when aging in place. Making these, sometimes small,improvements to your home will allow you to stay in the home you love forlonger. Prioritizing home safety not only preserves the dignity and autonomy ofseniors but also provides peace of mind for their families and caregivers.