Most people want to continue living at home for as long as possible. If you have an elderly relative who is in this position, there is a lot you can do to help them. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
Four Ways to Help an Elderly Relative to Continue to Live at Home
Keep scammers away
Unfortunately, scammers tend to target older people. So, you need to take steps to make it as hard as possible for them to do so. If you put up a no solicitation sign, in many states, you can call the police the moment someone knocks on their door uninvited. As a result, these signs are surprisingly effective. A lot of crooks don’t bother to try out their scams on homeowners who have no solicitation signs up.
However, they are not enough on their own. It is a good idea to install some sort of CCTV system. There are lots of ways you can potentially use it to help your elderly relative to stay safe. One of which is being able to see who is at their door. You can even listen in on the conversation if that is what they want. This enables you to intervene if necessary and tell the caller to leave.
The very presence of CCTV is in itself a way of discouraging scammers from calling. If you have installed it consider putting up a sign that advertises that fact.
Help them to make their home easier to get around
If your relative needs to use an electric wheelchair, help them to make adaptations to their home. Simple things like widening the doorways and having a wet room installed downstairs can make a big difference.
But, getting that sort of work done is a lot for someone who is elderly or sick to cope with. So, your volunteering to deal with the tradespeople can make a huge difference to them.
Make the garden low maintenance
Being able to continue to enjoy their outdoor spaces is important. People need to spend time outside to be able to generate and absorb enough vitamin D. It also ensures that enough natural light is available to stimulate the production of the hormones the regulate sleep and keep depression at bay. So, if they have a garden, you want to make sure that they can use it.
Ideally, they need to be able to walk straight outside onto a hard standing area without having to negotiate any kind of steps. Once outside you do not want them to have to worry about doing any heavy gardening work. Anything you can do to reduce their workload should be done. For example, replacing a lawn with fake grass and planting low-maintenance flowering shrubs is an approach that works. If they like growing vegetables, encourage them to switch to gardening using tubs. There is less bending and weeding involved. If you set up an automatic watering system they will not have to do much work to continue being able to eat fresh produce from their garden.
Use CCTV to stay in touch with and keep an eye on your relative
If your elderly relative is comfortable with your doing so, you can tap into their CCTV system and keep an eye on them. Provided the cameras are fitted with a speaker and microphone you can even have a conversation with them. You will be surprised by how much you can help your elderly relatives remotely by taking advantage of their home security system.