There is more to selecting the right location for the beloved seniors in your life than view, great cuisine and a good amount of social interaction. True, they should be high on the list, but the most important factor to consider is safety.
The right floor is everything
There are a number of ways seniors can and do fall in communities. Floors without carpeting or rugs are preferred. If carpeting is used in assisted living homes, it should be low pile. High pile carpeting increases the likelihood that someone will trip and get hurt. Properly secure rugs on the corners and all the way around the edges. In the kitchen areas, floor space should be wide enough for wheelchairs to pass between counters and center islands. In bathrooms, there should be non-skid surfaces on the bottom of tubs. Door locks should be installed that can be opened from both sides. Water temperature must not exceed 120° to make sure seniors do not suffer any serious burns.
The right seating could be life saving
Many seniors struggle to get up from a seated position. If chairs do not have armrests, there is a serious risk for falls. Make sure that the chairs in your loved one’s living area, dining area, and other common areas have arms. Seat height is important. 18.5 inches is the ideal height from the floor for most seniors. If your loved one is petite, you may want to obtain smaller chairs that he or she can get in and out of easily.
Getting from one level to the next with ease
Ensure that all stairs have railings that are sturdy and securely attached to the wall. If the community or home has more than one level, an elevator is a must-have. That elevator should be a clear enclosure allowing staff to see inside as more independent residents travel safely up and downstairs. It is also accommodating and appreciated to have wide ramps outfitted with railings installed leading to various ‘sunken’ rooms throughout the home.