Aging in place is by far the option most seniors prefer over moving into a retirement community or nursing home. However, as physical impairments and challenges increase with age, it’s wise to carry out structural modifications to accommodate mobility equipment and keep older people comfortable well into their golden years. Here are a few useful tips for making a home the perfect location for aging in place.
A Guide to Remodeling a Home for Aging in Place
1. Widen Doorways
If you rely on a wheelchair, walking frame, or other piece of mobility equipment to get around, consider widening the doorways in your home if they’re narrower than 32 inches. Widening typically requires replacing the entire frame.
A contractor may have to remove the existing frame, trim the surrounding drywall, modify any nearby wiring or light switches, and reseal and repaint the walls. Consult your home’s blueprints to determine if a door is built into a load-bearing wall, as it may not be possible to safely modify such a door and a new one may be needed instead.
2. Install Grab Bars
Slips and falls are a common hazard for seniors, which is why one of the most popular modifications for aging in place is installing handrails and grab bars in the home. These are particularly useful in long hallways, along stairwells, and in rooms which see a lot of moisture, such as kitchens and bathrooms. Grab bars are also among the most affordable modifications.
3. Add Wheelchair Ramps
Even if you don’t currently use a wheelchair or other piece of mobility equipment, ramps can make it much easier to navigate entryways safely. If you struggle with stairs, consider installing a chair lift to retain access to upper floors.
If you’re looking for solutions to make aging in place possible, reach out to Hometown Medical in Flowood, MS. They’ve carried an extensive range of dependable medical equipment for over 20 years, including custom wheelchairs, lift chairs, and mobility equipment. Call (601) 933-4699 to discuss your needs with a helpful representative, and visit them online to learn more.
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