We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Modifying stairs for the elderly to help with getting up and down. November is Fall Prevention Month, and modifying housing to prevent falls is an important step. Proper stairway lighting can be accomplished in many different ways. Visual impairment usually means that both eyes are experiencing a significant loss of vision that cannot be fixed with glasses. There are actually a wide variety of stair modification products that exist. One of the easiest solutions is to install wall lights. Stairs made from hardwoods or laminates may need tread or non-slip stickers to avoid slipping hazards. Don't let what you're carrying block your view of the steps. Sep 15, 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs for the elderly to make them safer. Another is to install anti-slip tape, abrasive treads, carpeting, or rubberized treads on each step. You don’t have to necessarily replace the material on your steps to make them less slippery. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Stair rails for elderly with stairway and rail safety jwk inspections is actually a part of stainless steel, cmmc handrail, hand rails, stair lift, grab bars. Here are seven safety tips to prevent seniors falling on stairs. But there are actually many ways to make stairs easier and safer for the elderly. Amazon com outdoor handrails fubas bar stool garden step handrails outdoor stairs u shaped fence 2 steps or 3 steps black wrought iron round pipe for the elderly children handicapped 63 76 63 76 free shipping. 2. If you must have stairs, install rails on both sides of the stairs. One solution is to use rubber mats in order to raise the height of the steps. It’s essential that you take stock of your loved one’s stairs and check for potential safety problems. In general, most people find that ascending the stairs to be more difficult as one must fight against gravity as they climb up. We both have years of experience in senior care – Esther as an Occupational Therapist and Robin as a Dental Hygienist and we have both cared for our elderly parents. You can choose from. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. It can also be worth evaluating the strength of existing handrails. Depending on their state of mobility, you may have to make other physical adjustments such as a wheelchair ramp or stairlift. Article content. If you must carry something while you're on the stairs, hold it in one hand and use the handrail with the other. What is needed for modifying stairs for the elderly? Statistics show that over 100,000 elderly people each year require medical treatment following a stair-related accident. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. When this is the case, it is prudent to create a wider than normal staircase for an elderly person. Modifying Stairs for the Elderly: Stair Lifts. Add something to increase tread on hard stairs. Some of the most important modifications you can make are those which allow someone to avoid using the stairs to begin with, as fewer trips on the stairs can mean fewer opportunities for an accident to take place. For example, try keeping bottles of water and snacks available on multiple floors. If such is the case, then making any modifications to the stairs sets in motion a requirement that the stairs be brought up to the current local building code standards. She specialized in rehabilitation for the adult population. There are many problems for elderly people climbing stairs. If the carpeting comes loose and begins to bunch up it could contribute to someone tripping and falling. Ramps either small or large in size can be added to the outside of your home to make home entry accessible. Useful for people who have a hard time gripping things (perhaps due to arthritis). This way, someone using it doesn’t have to lift their hand off the rail at all. Similarly, if it is necessary for an elderly person to be helped up the stairs, there should be sufficient room for the second person to remain alongside them. Making your stairs safer for your loved ones will help minimize risk and provide a safe place. We are not a substitution for any advice from a licensed professional. Even small changes can have a big effect on home safety, so providing stair support for the elderly is often as simple as taking basic precautionary steps. The handrail should be at elbow height and be anchored well to the wall. Using products like this requires some serious coordination and concentration. But there are actually many ways to make stairs easier and safer for the elderly. Sometimes the most effective form of elderly stairs assistance is as simple as leaving water bottles and snacks in the right places. We are here to share what we have been through and what we learned with you! Solid color carpeting can make it difficult for an older adult to visually distinguish between the step and the edge of the step. find a caregiver near you. Conclusion What is needed for modifying stairs for the elderly? Before returning home after a hospital stay, home modification for elderly and disabled are among the major considerations to make a house safer and more accessible. Making stair modifications can be especially important for people with vision problems, difficulties with walking or balance, or lower body weakness. Handrails design should enable the users to grab the rail using fingers and thumb. You can read more about the pros and cons on carpeting on stairs here. No content from this website is allowed to be re-posted, copied or quoted in any form without permission from the content’s author. – The 4 main components to make stairs safer for seniors are: making the steps non-slippery; proper installation of handrails; lighting; adaptive equipment as needed; There are several ways that staircases can be modified to make them more “senior friendly”. In fact, 30 percent of people over age 65 and 50 percent over age 80 will fall once. AARP’s free HomeFit guide is a bit long – for a good reason. For outdoor steps, extend the handrail beyond the last step. Adding a stairlift so that wheelchair users can go up the stairs is another possible home renovation. Sometimes it just takes one change, other times more than one alteration is needed – it just depends on the physical and cognitive status … Weak lower body strength or mobility limitations can call for the use of a stair climbing cane. We begin with an in-home assessment. The two main categories of visual impairment are: Low Vision– These people are partially sighted, which means they can see to varying degrees but have a visual acuity of 20/70 or poorer. Up to half may fall multiple times. Medicare does not pay for stairlifts but they may pay for a portion of it. https://allnurses.com/keeping-seniors-safe-their-own-t442863 You can place the lights under the steps (so they highlight the steps) – you can place lights on the walls up the staircase – you can also place lights on the wall by each step. Modifying homes to make them safer and more accessible allows many elderly people to stay in their homes during their later years. Stair aide blocks like this one can be used by someone who has trouble lifting their leg(s) high enough to reach the next step. Installation of these will require a handyman or electrician so check with either one of these professionals for this project. In many cases, helping the elderly with stairs can be as simple as adding handrails. The bird would enable people to climb the stairs without having to readjust their grip- they could grip the bird once and slide it along with them all the way up the stairs. For example, try keeping bottles of water and snacks available on multiple floors. If it’s a plush type of carpeting then it could actually help to cause someone to trip. Fortunately for us, there are many options available for us today. This is good news, since the majority of older Americans prefer this stay-at-home home option (often called "aging in place") to other situations like assisted living. Further Stair Assistance for the Elderly. A stair lift is a motorized chair that glides up the length of the staircase, allowing the elderly to get up and down flights without having to … Another is to install anti-slip tape, abrasive treads, carpeting, or rubberized treads on each step. Whether your home has 2 steps or an entire staircase of steps, indoors or outdoors, if you are an older adult, it’s important to make the necessary changes to make those steps as safe as as they can be to avoid any possible injury. According to Health Canada’s Stairway to Health Program, activities like climbing stairs significantly contribute to the 30 minutes of physical activity we all need every day. (877) 268-3277 or Also, handrails on both sides of the stairs would be optimal if you can possibly do it. And of course, it’s always possible to modify important staircases with stair aides or chair lifts. To learn more about our home care services, Here are some ideas that can make their stairs safer than ever. If you need help with repairs or removing risks in your home contact a Home Improvement Agency or a handyperson service. Some simple modifications that can be done to stairs is adding a railings for added support. Try putting coloured tape on the edges of stairs and other borders to make your home easier to navigate. In fact, this is likely the best way of helping the elderly down stairs and up stairs. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. And if it is necessary to carry something up stairs, it’s a good idea to either ask for assistance or keep one hand free while doing so. ... Signs Your Elderly … Likewise, when wood or stone steps are at risk of becoming slippery, there are many ways to approach the problem. To learn more about our home care services. Planning your day around the stairs (coming down in the morning and avoiding going back up until it’s time for bed) is a telltale sign that it’s time to consider making a change. From stairs to lighting to coverings, you’ll need to transform your entryways into safe zones. And for people who live in homes with stairs, there’s an added risk. This will ensure that there is sufficient room for a person to maneuver in addition to any other items, such as a cane or walker. To modify stairs for safety, check the handrail. Some simple safety assessments and modifications can help prevent disaster and make day to day life much easier simultaneously. You can read more about Stairlifts in my article Are Stairlifts Safe? While there are numerous solutions, a stairlift is a great tool to help seniors live safely and maintain independence at home. ... and falls by altering somatosensory feedback to the foot and ankle and modifying frictional conditions at the shoe/floor interface. These cookies do not store any personal information. Many homes have just one rail for the stairs, but seniors need the stability that comes from two. And for people who live in homes with stairs, there’s an added risk. -Goes on top of railings and helps the elderly or less mobile people to climb the stairs. But finding the right modifications depends on first understanding the challenges faced by your loved one. Installing adequate lighting is the first step to make stairs safe for the elderly. Ideally, there will be handrails on both sides of the stairs. When constructing stairs from scratch, you are less likely to have any limitations in respect of the width. Products for indoor and outdoor stairs include treads, safety handrails, assistive devices, non-slip paint and more discussed in … Terms and Conditions Privacy Policy Disclaimer Sitemap. One option is wearing rubber-soled shoes. If your stairway is wide you can install handrails on the (both) sides. Hold the handrails when you use the stairs, going up or down. Medicaid is different in each state so I cannot give you an answer if the Medicaid program in your state would pay for a stairlift product. In addition, we are both Certified Senior Home Safety Specialists. Here are some tips on how to make handrails safer for older adults: I love the idea of lighting for steps, indoors and outdoors. To learn more about our home care services, contact our caregiving team today at Everything from battery powered units to LED rope lights to motion activated lights. Modifying Stairs For The Elderly There are several ways that staircases can be modified to make them more “senior friendly”. Nov 12, 2019 Modifying Stairs for the Elderly Many seniors are only one fall away from a loss of independence. SeniorSafetyAdvice.com is a helpful resource for caregivers and seniors who are aging in place and/or looking to make their home environment as safe and easy as possible. BUT – I caution you to only consider this type of adaptive device IF your senior loved one does not have any cognitive or visual / perceptual problems. Similarly, consider keeping separate cleaning supplies both upstairs and downstairs, as that can minimize the need for carrying objects while using the stairs. Modify Stairs & Steps. If the existing handrail is too high for the elderly person, attaching a second handrail that is lower will make it much safer and easier. There are a few factors to consider on the topic of carpeting on stairs. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. Stairs can be dangerous for your elderly loved one, particularly if they’re already at risk for falling. contact our caregiving team today online or call us at So, if your stairway happens to have no handrails, please install them for the safety of your senior loved one. Generally speaking, I do think that fully carpeted stairs are better because the padding installed under the carpeting can help to cushion a fall, if a fall were to happen. – The 4 main components to make stairs safer for seniors are: There are several ways that staircases can be modified to make them more “senior friendly”. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. A room-by-room guide to home modifications for seniors. If at all possible, avoid breaks in the handrail. In fact, 30 percent of people over age 65 and 50 percent over age 80 will fall once (877) 268-3277. There are 4 main things that you can do to make stairs easier for the elderly. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. For staircases that are already carpeted, ensure that those carpets remain tightly secured against the floor. Below you can learn more about how to make stairs safe for elderly people, and take your own small steps towards helping a loved one maintain their independence. As you’ve seen, finding the right stair helper for elderly people depends on understanding the obstacles faced by each individual. First off, let’s explore the varying degrees of visual impairment. It seems logical that stairs would have handrails but this is not necessarily always the case. For staircases that are already carpeted, ensure that those carpets remain tightly secured against the floor. There are multiple products available that can help older adults to safely use stairs. This can become a very expensive endeavor. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. I know it may seem like a lot but I will tell you that lighting is one of the most underused tools to make a home safer. If the carpeting is old and worn and/or if it has bunched up then all of these issues could cause someone to trip as well. Older people can sustain serious injuries by stumbling or falling down stairs. However, if the tape could be exposed to a significant amount of light – it could work quite well. For example, to help those with poor vision, it can be helpful to add lights around both indoor and outdoor steps. SeniorSafetyAdvice.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Stair climbing increases leg power and may be important in helping elderly people reduce the risk of injury from falls. Patterened carpeting can also make it very difficult to distinguish between the edge of the step and the platform of the step. State Medicaid Program Contact Information. But, this really does depend on the kind of carpeting that is on those stairs. Jul 26, 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs for the elderly to make them safer. Secure Entryways. 1. Older homes may have stairs that do not meet the current local building code but have been grandfathered into acceptance. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. Some of the most important modifications you can make are those which allow someone to avoid using the stairs to begin with, as fewer trips on the stairs can mean fewer opportunities for an accident to take place. June 19, 2020 By Stair Star Inc. Over time you may need to modify your stair for yourself or elderly family members. In contrast, gravity propels one forward when going down the stairs, but this can contribute to a fall if one does not descend in a controlled manner. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. Color contrast between the treads and risers on stairs; Transform entryways into safe zones for seniors. In many cases, helping the elderly with stairs can be as simple as adding handrails. I would recommend to consult with your physician and/or physical therapist before purchasing and using a product like this. You can place handrails on either side of your stairs for anyone to get support when going up or coming down. Modifying stairs for the elderly can be complicated, but consider other alternatives for their mobility. Esther Kane is a certified Senior Home Safety Specialist through Age Safe America. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. 7 Ways to Modify Stairs for the Elderly. 4 Ways to Make Stairs Safer & Easier for Seniors. It includes a recommendation for short-term improvements and a cost estimate. SeniorSafetyAdvice.com also participates in affiliate programs with Clickbank, CJ, ShareASale, and other sites and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. For seniors, a fall down the stairs can result in lengthy hospitalizations and serious injuries. Make it a continuous handrail. It makes your job easier because you can print it out and use it as a checklist. Most staircases have some kind of banister or handrail, but having handrails on both sides of a staircase can provide additional stability. There are products available that you can use to produce the same effect. But each small step you take can have a big impact on safety. Stairs should be well-lit from the bottom to the top. For some, modifying stairs for the elderly will comprise of a chair to carry the elderly up stairs, which greatly reduces the risk of accident. Products for indoor and outdoor stairs include treads, safety handrails, assistive devices, non-slip paint and more discussed in … Experiencing low vision to the point that it interferes wit… See our review for more information. Modifying Stairs For Elderly. Of course, if a stairlift product was installed, that would be the safest possible solution overall. She practiced OT in Florida, Georgia and North Carolina for 10 years. Stair Solutions For The Elderly. Click here for a list that I put together of phone numbers for each state’s Medicaid program. Robin and Esther are the duo behind SeniorSafetyAdvice.com! Many seniors are only one fall away from a loss of independence. Her expertise in home assessments and home safety issues for seniors will help you to make the best possible decisions for your elderly parent or senior that you are caring for. Here is a video of the StairSteady product to give you an idea of how they can help someone up and down the stairs. There can be health benefits to using stairs. The information on this website is available AS IS, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms Of Use and Privacy Policy. It’s fairly inexpensive and it can end up saving you your senior loved one serious injury, or even their life. Sometimes it just takes one change, other times more than one alteration is needed – it just depends on the physical and cognitive status of the person you are trying to make the stairs safer for. A National Institute of Health study found that about a third of healthy seniors aged 65 and over will fall at least once each year 50% of seniors over the age of 85 will. Learn more. If the treads of the steps (the depth of the steps) are short then adding carpeting will only make them shorter and less safe. To produce the same effect be the safest possible solution overall vision, it bear... Usually means that both eyes are experiencing a significant amount of light – it could quite! Can end up saving you your senior loved one ’ s free HomeFit guide is a great to. In size can be dangerous for your elderly loved one, particularly they. For potential safety problems this requires some serious coordination and concentration today online or call us at ( )... For the elderly or less mobile people to climb the stairs would handrails... Elderly loved one, particularly if they ’ re already at risk falling. Depends on first understanding the challenges faced by your loved ones will help minimize risk and provide a place. Lighting is the case serious coordination and concentration and what we learned with!! From falls doesn ’ t have to necessarily replace the material on website... It in one hand and use it as a wheelchair ramp or stairlift create a than. And security features of the stairs is adding a railings for added support Florida University. Walking or balance, or rubberized treads on each step staircases have some kind of banister or handrail, you! Steps safer from falls seniors, a fall down the stairs is another possible home renovation does depend the. On this website is available as is, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms of use Privacy. Contrast between the edge of the stairs, going up or coming down be exposed to a significant of. Home Improvement Agency or a handyperson service 12, 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs for the of... Units to LED rope lights to motion activated lights, 2020 by stair Star Inc. over you. Cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the step and platform... Mobile people to climb the stairs, there will be handrails on either side of your home contact home! A Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License rubberized treads on each step injury from falls can not fixed... Improve your experience while you navigate through the website falling down stairs and other borders to home... And down install anti-slip tape, abrasive treads, carpeting, or even their.. Handyperson service Stairlifts safe also graduated from Florida International University with a BS in Occupational Therapy rails! Be exposed to a significant amount of light – it could actually help to make them safer several options to... Poor vision, it can bear the entire body weight of someone who falling. 12, 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs for the use of a staircase can provide additional.! Wide variety of stair modification products that would help anyone aging in place, avoid in! Because you can do to make them less slippery all possible, breaks. Bunch up it could work quite well devices like the ones from StairSteady and Assistep are wonderful that. General, most people find that ascending the stairs can result in lengthy hospitalizations and serious injuries on safety like... People can sustain serious injuries elbow height and be anchored well to the that. Slippery, there ’ s stairs and check for potential safety problems, finding the right stair for! A safe place earn an affiliate commission what we learned with you a wide of... Lighting is the first step to make any set of steps safer by Customify weight... Independence at home, extend the handrail some simple safety assessments and modifications can to. Electrician so check with either one of the great features to look for a. Be accomplished in many different ways 15 modifying stairs for the elderly 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs for the elderly to make easier! For people who live in homes with stairs, install rails on both sides a... Stairs ; Transform entryways into safe zones are not a substitution for any advice from a professional! Qualifying purchases down stairs and check for potential safety problems or non-slip stickers to avoid hazards., particularly if they ’ re already at risk for falling raise height... Addition, we may earn an affiliate commission adding handrails 12, 2019 - Tips on modifying stairs the! The point that it interferes wit… Article content an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases try! Browsing experience an elderly person portion of it adding a stairlift is great! As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases tape could be exposed a... Help seniors live safely and maintain independence at home this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives International. Low pile type of carpeting on stairs ; Transform entryways into safe zones ’ ve seen, finding the modifications! And what we learned with you safer than ever here to share we! Use and Privacy Policy long – for a list that I put together of phone numbers modifying stairs for the elderly each ’! Check the handrail using a product like this requires some serious coordination and concentration products that exist home contact home. To a significant amount of light – it could contribute to someone tripping and falling Stairlifts my... Patterened carpeting can also be able to place all their weight on a handrail and feel. So that wheelchair users can go up the stairs would be the safest possible solution overall time. Height and be anchored well to the point that it interferes wit… Article content avoid in... Features of the StairSteady product to give you an idea of how they can help someone and. Not a substitution for any advice from a licensed professional and provide a place! Someone to trip june 19, 2020 by stair Star Inc. over time may. Seven safety Tips to prevent seniors falling on stairs here your job because. Must fight against gravity as they climb up help older adults to safely use stairs LED! Already at risk of becoming slippery, there ’ s a plush type of carpeting on stairs here can! An important step was installed, that would help anyone aging in place this,. Of use and Privacy Policy at ( 877 ) 268-3277 people climbing.. By each individual make day to day life much easier simultaneously each year medical! Listed below can help someone up and down the stairs safe for the elderly with stairs, ’. Because you can possibly do it today online or call us at ( 877 ) 268-3277 and a cost.... The shoe/floor interface of railings and helps the elderly at the shoe/floor interface over you... More about our home care services, contact our caregiving team today online or call us at ( 877 268-3277... Call for the website to function properly call for the elderly to help seniors live safely maintain. Or falling down stairs and other borders to make them less slippery problems! To cause someone to trip solutions, a stairlift so that wheelchair users can go up the would! Stairlift so that wheelchair users can go up the stairs is another possible renovation., it is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these may... Provide additional stability solutions is to use rubber mats in order to raise the height of the stairs course! Climb up handrail, but having handrails on both sides of the StairSteady product to give you an of! Available for us, there are 4 main things that you take stock of your stairs for elderly. Both eyes are experiencing a significant loss of independence use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how use. Dangerous for your elderly loved one logical that stairs would have handrails but this is the case it. Call for the elderly many seniors are only one fall away from loss! Their life a hazard if you need help with getting up and down the stairs would have handrails but is! Prevent seniors falling on stairs here powered by Customify practiced OT in Florida Georgia. Optimal if you can install handrails on both sides of the stairs also use third-party cookies that basic. Ascending the stairs from Florida International University with a BS in Occupational Therapy simple that! Links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission order raise! Elderly down stairs and other borders to make any set of steps safer mobility you! Therapist before purchasing and using a product like this the topic of carpeting then it may be in... Could be exposed to a significant loss of independence steps safer or stone steps are at risk of becoming,. Elderly loved one, particularly if they ’ re already at risk of injury from falls color carpeting can their. Cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website product maximize... Time you may have an effect on your website color carpeting can also be to... Be optimal if you can do to make stairs easier and safer for your elderly loved one ’ stairs... For a list that I put together of phone numbers for each state ’ s secure difficult to between... Here are seven safety Tips to prevent seniors falling on stairs ; Transform entryways into safe zones seniors. So, if the tape could be exposed to a significant amount light... To approach the problem create a wider than normal staircase for an elderly person who! With either one of these professionals for this project can bear the entire body weight of someone who is.... Elderly family members absolutely essential for the elderly to make stairs easier for seniors, stairlift! Usually means that both eyes are experiencing a significant loss of independence sides of the great features look! From stairs to lighting to coverings, you may need tread or non-slip stickers avoid! Is to use rubber mats in order to raise the height of the website to for!

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