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Nearly half of senior home accidents are preventable, according to an emergency room doctor survey.
Home Instead Senior Care of Santa Fe, Los Alamos and Española offers free home safety checks and easy fixes to reduce accidents to help ensure safety of seniors.
Nearly 20 million seniors visit the emergency room each year with almost a third of the visits related to injuries, many of which are sustained in the place seniors are meant to feel the safest: their home.
In fact, 65 percent of senior homes have at least one potential safety issue, according to adult children of seniors surveyed by Home Instead, Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care network.
These preventable home hazards, such as throw rugs or loose railings, can be particularly harmful, leading to falls and injuries that can impact seniors’ ability to live independently.
However, the majority of seniors (85 percent) haven’t taken any steps to prepare their homes for their changing needs as they grow older.
“The home should be the safest and most comfortable place for aging seniors,” said Chico Marquez of the Home Instead Senior Care office serving Santa Fe, Los Alamos and Española.
Senior home safety experts recommend that adult children of seniors take at least one day each year to perform a thorough safety check of their parents’ home. To help families accomplish this goal and help seniors reduce the risk of injury in their own homes, the Home Instead Senior Care office serving Santa Fe, Los Alamos and Espanola is offering free home safety checks conducted by local senior care experts throughout June. The safety checks will be provided at no cost on a time-available basis.
“An annual safety check can help seniors avoid dangers that could threaten their independence,” said Marquez. “When we go into homes, we see a lot of red flags that are easily overlooked by those who are familiar with the home. Most of the time, these are relatively easy and affordable fixes.”
The most common issues found in seniors’ homes are tripping hazards, bathrooms without assistive equipment, such as grab bars on the shower or tub, and storage that’s too high or too low.
A free home safety checklist, online safety assessment and recommendations for inexpensive modifications that could ensure the safety of older loved ones are also available at makinghomesaferforseniors.com.
To request a free home safety check or the home safety checklist, please call the local Home Instead Senior Care office at 471-2777.