There’s no place like home, so it’s no surprise that’s where many seniors want to age. According to the AARP, approximately 90 percent of seniors intend to continue living in their current homes for the next five to 10 years. But only 65 percent of seniors between the ages of 60 and 70 find it very easy to live independently, and only 43 percent among those aged 70 and older find it very easy.
In an article recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers from the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Harvard Medical School recount the experience of a family member of a patient with a disabling condition who was finally able to return home after a six-week hospital stay.
“Just to see familiar photos on the wall made us feel we could breathe again,” the family member said.
If you want to help your older relatives stay independent longer and maximize the number of days they can spend at home, there are many products and services that can make aging in place easier.
Home Care Services
There are a lot of things someone has to do to keep a household running smoothly, from doing laundry to going to the grocery store to staying on top of bills. Depending on how much support your family member needs with personal care, housecleaning, making nutritious meals and managing money, there are services that might be of help. Hiring a trained home health aide for a short time each day or setting up online grocery shopping to reduce the stress of going to the store might be all the support your loved one needs to stay at home.
Medical Alert Systems
There are things you can do to prepare the home to make it easier and safer to live in, such as installing grab bars in the tub or shower or a ramp at the front door. But emergencies still happen, and technology plays a big role in providing elderly loved ones with assistance and caregivers with peace-of-mind. Personal emergency response systems (PERS) and mobile PERS, such as the Admiral Protect auto fall detection device, can mean the difference between a major crisis and an independent life.
Health Monitoring Systems
If you are worried that your loved one often forgets to take their medication or are concerned about their high blood pressure, there are devices available to decrease your stress and increase their independence. For example, Reminder Rosie is a clock that helps remind seniors when it is time for their next dose of medication or to leave for a doctor appointment. A blood pressure cuff that wirelessly connects to monitoring software can help your loved one simply and accurately monitor their blood pressure.