Aging in place is a concept in which older people continue to live in their homes for as long as they can safely and comfortably instead of moving to a retirement facility. Aging in place products extend the length of time senior citizens can remain autonomous and live where they choose to live.
With the following aging in place products, which range from high-tech to simple, costly to inexpensive, our senior citizens can stay in their homes for longer, without the need to move into retirement facilities or care homes.
Aging In Place Products That Assist With Safety, Health, And Security
Motion-sensor lights can help to minimize the risk of tripping and falling. They can be wired or located so that they are triggered when you enter a room. These lights can also be installed at floor level in the bedroom, so they turn on when the person stands up.
Some motion-sensor lights are linked to a home assist hub and alert loved ones and caregivers when their elderly relative gets up and if they are getting up multiple times during the night.
You can get medical alert devices that an older person can wear, like a wristwatch. If they are in trouble, they can press a button and instantly connect with an emergency dispatcher or a loved one.
Another feature that some medical-alert devices have is a fall detection system. This will send a notification to a predetermined receiver that the person wearing the device has fallen and may need help.
Smart Home Assist
Linking a smartphone to a smart home assist unit can allow the system to inform you about appointments and reminders, such as a medical check-up or taking your medicine. Additionally, voice-activated units can tell you the date, time, and other information, without having to try and find it yourself on the phone.
Automatic Shut-Off Outlet Adapters
You can purchase outlet adaptors that shut off the power to any device plugged in after a certain amount of time. This can prevent fires if coffee makers or hot plates, etc., are accidentally left on by older people.
Keeping track of chronic medication can be tricky at any age, but medicine organizers can help you know if you have taken your medication. Plastic organizers can be used for multiple dosages per day or one per day for a week or a month.
For older people, you need to ensure that the containers are secure enough not to pop open and spill but easy enough for someone with reduced motor skills or arthritis to open.
Alternatively, automatic medicine dispensers can be set only to release the allowable daily dosage, minimizing the risk of over-dosing.
For further assistance in remembering to keep up with vital medication, you can get medicine dispensers that sound an alert when it’s time to take your pills.
Aging In Place Products That Assist With Bending, Sitting, And Standing
Grabber Reacher Tools
Grabber reachers are simple devices that eliminate the need to bend over to retrieve dropped items or items kept low. They are also lightweight and easy to use, so no particular strength is required.
These days, there are grabber/reacher tools with enough precision and pincer-grip to pick up coins and keys.
Sometimes, it’s the small things, like not having to reach over your head to hang washing. Seniors will find portable racks much more accessible for hanging their laundry on.
Railings can be installed on the bed. These can be shorter, aimed at assisting a person to rise out of bed. Or they can be longer and serve the function of guardrails.
However, if guardrails are installed, they should be easy to put down again by someone in the bed, so they do not get trapped.
Having a bed with hospital bed-like functionality can extend how long a senior person can continue to live independently in their own home. Often, after a long sleep, older people are very stiff, and they find getting up difficult.
Have the ability to raise the top end of the bed into a sitting position can make it easier to swing your legs off. Additionally, you can raise the entire bed to make it easier to sit down on or stand up.
Aging In Place Products That Assist With Moving Around
Stairlifts are not a particularly new invention, but over the years, they have evolved. The installation of a stairlift can allow an older person to remain in their multi-story home for longer.
What’s excellent about stairlifts is they are designed to be installed in existing houses, and they can go around bends and corners.
Whether or not they use a wheelchair or walker, many older people find a gradual ramp easier to navigate than steps. You can install wheelchair ramps over any steps in the home or at entrances to the house.
Aging In Place Products That Assist In The Bathroom
Toilet Booster Seat
A toilet booster seat reduces the distance that a person needs to lower themselves when they sit on the toilet.
There are a few different options for this product. Some are simple wedge-like rings that fit onto the toilet seat, some have handles and armrests to assist in lowering and rising, some are height adjustable, and some are even motorized.
Shower Seats And Hand-Held Showerheads
Installing a shower seat and a hand-held showerhead means the person does not need to stand while they shower.
Handrails can be installed near a toilet to assist with raising and lowering. They can also be installed near bathtubs and showers to help with stepping in and out; this is very important when surfaces are wet and slippery.
Aging In Place Products That Assist With Grip And Fine Motor Skills
These are products into which you fit keys. They provide a larger surface area to grip while you insert and turn a key in a lock, and they are great aids for people with arthritis. You can view some examples on Amazon here.
Grip Jar Openers
Grip jar openers, such as those linked here, help people with weak or arthritic hands open jars. They can also be installed below an upper cabinet in the kitchen, so no bending or crouching is required to use it.
Electric Can Openers
Most manual can openers take quite a bit of force to pierce the tin, squeeze the arms together, and then twist the mechanism. Electric can openers remove the necessity of this force.
Swapping out the old remotes with far too many tiny buttons for a TV remote with more prominent and fewer buttons makes watching television a much less stressful and frustrating pastime.
Aging In Place Products That Keep Seniors Connected To Their Loved Ones
A good WiFi system is critical for keeping seniors connected with their loved ones.
Tablet And Docking Station
Setting up a tablet with a docking station will keep the tablet charged. Set it up in a place where the person will be comfortable taking and making video calls, reducing the need to move it around and possibly let it run flat.
People live longer due to advances in medicine and technology. Not to mention, retirement villages and nursing homes are often filled to capacity. In addition to this lack of available placements, many older people prefer to stay in their own, familiar homes, exercising their independence.
And the products listed in this post, and those currently in development, will allow aging seniors to remain in their homes for longer, safely, and securely.
ABOUT ameriCARE San Francisco
ameriCARE San Francisco is a family-owned and operated home care agency serving all the San Francisco Bay Area. We are a new kind of in-home care. We believe it’s time the senior home care experience became more personalized, positive, and empowering. We offer home care assistance that is flexible and accommodating to your schedule with no contracts.
Our in-home care services leverage smart technology that not only improves our personalized care plans but also provides more transparency into our daily care in the home and our communication with the entire care circle. ameriCARE San Francisco believes that thoughtful, personalized care has the power to not only maintain but also enrich anyone’s quality of life.