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Home Modifications and Tools for Seniors Aging in Place

Aug 15, 2018 by Comfort Keepers of San Marcos

There are a lot of ailments that people assume are a normal part of aging. Digestive issues, sleep problems, and so on are a just a few common problems many seniors put up with simply because they think they’re supposed to.

Another example is limited mobility. It’s true that our bodies can become a little stiffer and weaker with age, but this doesn't mean we should simply “put up” with it.

If your senior is experiencing problems with sitting or standing, especially if they’re in pain, there are tools you can use to make the processes easier for them, at least. Here are some senior favorites to try out:

The Free Option: Exercise

Don’t skim past this paragraph! It is actually possible through strength training to make standing and sitting easier for a senior experiencing mobility issues.

One example is practicing sitting to standing. Start by getting a chair that is sturdy enough to not move when sitting down or standing up from it.

It’s important that you are there with them through the entirety of this exercise to ensure their safety!

Next, have your senior sit on the edge of the chair, with their toes falling in line with their knees. Have them slowly stand up from the chair by putting their weight into their legs and onto their toes to push them up. They can use their arms to push off of their knees or the sides of the chair, if needed.

After standing up straight, have them sit back down by bending the knees and pushing their hips back as they slowly lower onto the edge of the chair once more.

Do this every day for at least a few repetitions. When it becomes easier for your senior to sit and stand, make the exercise more difficult by crossing their arms over their chest as they do this, and later on even holding a light weight in front of them!

While this option is encouraged for almost anyone with mobility issues, these exercises will not make a world of difference for everybody. Other tools may be needed, and that is okay – just realize that a multi-faceted approach to managing these difficulties will result in the best outcome!

Install Grab Bars Throughout the Home

If your senior finds themselves having issues navigating specific areas of the home, install a grab bar in those spots to make mobility easier and safer.

Some good places to put a grab bar include, but are certainly not limited to:

  • The bathroom, especially near the shower or toilet
  • Tight corners
  • Near the top of bottom of the stairs
  • Near entrances/exits to the home

You can also use a security pole with a grab bar attached and put that literally anywhere in the house, including right next to the sofa or favorite recliner they sit in. This also avoids having to drill into the walls and makes it a portable option, too!

Two Kinds of Cushions

While there are many different cushions that can help seniors and their unique situations, there are two in particular that can help someone who’s having trouble sitting and standing.

The first is a lifting cushion. This is simply some extra padding added onto a chair to reduce the distance it takes to sit and stand up from it. Some of these cushions are even electric to help lift and lower the senior more easily.

The second kind is a swivel cushion. Twisting to get out of a chair or to sit down properly into one can be painful and difficult to do, especially when getting into or out of a car. Swivel cushions do the twisting for you. They’re portable, too, so you can use it inside and then take it with you when you’re driving your senior somewhere.

A Rolling Walker

Not only can this tool help with sitting and standing, but it is a great mobility aid and a vital tool for fall prevention for those with mobility issues. Just be sure it is in the locked position when using it to sit or stand, as it can freely roll away otherwise instead of providing stability.

A walker may even be covered by Medicare, depending on what plan you have.

These tools can make these actions that used to be easy for your senior simple and safe again. Enhance their quality of life by trying one or more of these tools today.

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