Strategies for Making the Kitchen Safer for Older Adults

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For seniors who still live alone, the kitchen poses several dangers. Caregivers can help by providing their aging loved ones with the safety features they need to cook, clean, and eat without fear. Here are a few easy ways to senior-proof the kitchen. 

Install Automatic Shut-Off Devices

Fires are the most critical kitchen-related safety risk. To prevent fires, install automatic shut-off devices in the kitchen for stoves, hot plates, toasters, pressure cookers, and coffee makers. These devices give seniors peace of mind while preparing food in the kitchen. 

Aging adults who need help around the kitchen and assistance with daily activities can benefit from having an in-home caregiver. In Centennial, home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Add Bright Lighting

To create a safe cooking space, seniors need to be able to see everything they’re doing, which requires bright lighting. A few mega-watt bulbs may be enough to boost the intensity of the existing kitchen lights. If your loved one still has difficulty finding things in dark cabinets and drawers, install under-cabinet lighting. 

Investigate the Outlets

Make sure all the kitchen outlets are working and utilized properly. When an outlet is warm to the touch, it may be a sign it is improperly wired. If you suspect faulty electrical wiring, hire an electrician to do an inspection. Use ground fault circuit interrupters to reduce the chances of electrical overload, and tack down electrical cords to prevent tripping. 

If your loved one needs some help around the home to prevent injuries, consider hiring a caregiver. In Centennial, Colorado, home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.

Purchase a Fire Extinguisher and Check the Smoke Detectors

Because kitchen fires are one of the greatest threats to safety, seniors need to have ways to detect and put out small fires. Make sure the smoke detectors in your loved one’s home are working. Check the batteries several times a year. A kitchen fire extinguisher is also a good idea. Seniors don’t always have the quickest reaction reflexes, so fire extinguishers should be small, easy to handle, and immediately accessible. 

Secure Rugs

Kitchens are often equipped with slippery flooring. To prevent injuries, place non-slip rugs at heavily used areas of the kitchen, like in front of the sink and stovetop. If the rugs aren’t secured to the floor, they could become a hazard. Using double-stick tape ensures the rugs stay in place. 

Organize the Cabinets and Drawers

The most frequently used items should be in the easiest to reach cabinets. If your loved one has a difficult time bending over, pull-out drawers can make the bottom cabinets more accessible. The least frequently used items should go in the higher cabinets. Create specific storage areas for knives and sharp utensils, as they can be a safety hazard when not properly organized.

Taking precautions can increase safety for seniors both inside and outside the home. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Centennial, Colorado, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. To learn about our revolutionary senior home care plans, call one of our professional Care Managers at 303.957.3100 today.