Your house is the place to be for family gatherings. There’s lots of space for the kids to run around, a beautiful deck for people to congregate, but some folks aren’t as young as they used to be. Even though your deck may be accessible to a majority of your guests, those steep steps may be like climbing a mountain to some of your older relatives. Without proper hand railings or assistance, these steps could cause serious falls. Since nobody is getting any younger, it is a good idea to install accessible decks and ramps at your home.
If you have elderly members in your family, negotiating difficult pathways and hard-to-climb stairs can prove hazardous. Nobody wants to put a barbeque on hold due to a nasty spill. Therefore, creating accessible decks and landings should be installed. In order to evaluate your exact needs, you need to look at safety. How safe is your living space in its current state? What do you need to make everything safer and more accessible for the older folks in your family that may have difficulty walking, or are maybe even in a wheelchair? You should also consider developments that you may not need now, but are strong possibilities in the future. Once you have concluded everything you need to increase the safety of your home, you can begin planning your safety features.
Planning Safety Features
When designing your home, you don’t often think about what may be hazardous for those with limited mobility if it’s not something you have to deal with daily. Therefore, when you start planning new safety features for your home, consider these factors that impede those who have difficulties with movement:
Traction: Slippery or cluttered walkways, steps, and even ramps are daunting to those who already have limited mobility. Most of the time, elderly folks don’t pick their feet up when they walk, so if steps are too steep or if there is a lot of clutter in their paths, they can slip or fall. Installing non-slip treads improves traction and helps ensure proper footing. Not only that, but better traction will eliminate falls, trips, and slips.
Grip: Not having proper railings or handles can also keep aging family members from climbing stairs, even if it’s only a few steps. Installing grab bars and proper railings assist those with balance issues and limited mobility. If you can, try to install these helpful safety features on both sides in order to ensure that there will not be any falls. Since aging adults often have trouble bending their knees, having access to grab bars or proper railings increases stability and can help them climb taller stairs or even the few steps to your front door without extra assistance.
Remember these helpful tips when designing a more accessible home for your elderly friends and family members, and you won’t be sorry.