How To Make Your Yard Senior Safe
Posted on October 26, 2015
in Fall Prevention
Now that you’re retired, you have more time on your hands to
spend how you choose. Whether you love getting your hands dirty or prefer to
look from afar, your yard should be a sanctuary where you can feel safe and
enjoy the outdoors. Getting
your yard in shape will mean less maintenance, leaving more time for the
fun stuff. Getting your yard prepped for your time at home means easier winters
and summers down the road.
installing an accessible garden. Raised garden beds are a great idea if you
to garden. These versatile beds will reduce back pain and the risk of back
injuries. Everyone can access them, including those in wheelchairs. Bonus:
Animals such as dogs, rabbits, moles will not be able to destroy your garden!
gardening tools within easy reach. All tools should be easy to reach in
flat-footed stance. This will help you keep your balance and prevent injuries from reaching too far. Plus, an
organized tool shed means you safe time searching for what you need.
- Keep yard
chemicals clearly labeled and dated. This will prevent possible mishaps
from using the wrong bottle or using chemicals out of date. You don’t want to
find that your garden has been killed if you accidentally use weed killer on
your delicate flowers.
- Keep walkways
level. If your walkways are uneven you have a greater risk for tripping and
falling. Hire someone who can grind down a raised walkway and fill in holes.
- Make sure
walkways are clear. Keep your yard clear of debris and plant overgrowth,
especially those that reach into walkways.
plentiful lighting. Do you have enough light to see objects on the ground in
your yard? Things like sprinklers, a hose, or lawn ornaments are easy to trip
over in the dark. Motion sensor lights
are especially helpful. Light your front door to reduce time searching for the
Home Entrance Safety
- Install a
ramp. If you have trouble climbing stairs, it is a good idea to replace the
stairs leading up to your front door with a ramp. Make sure the ramp is easy
walk up and not too steep.
- Install handrails
on ramp or stairs. Handrails are necessary for safely getting up and down ramps.
Paint the rails contrasting color to ensure visibility, even in the snow. The
rails should extend a foot beyond top and bottom so you can stabilize yourself
on those last steps.
- Install a
curb on the ramp. Curbs on both sides of a ramp will prevent you falling
off the side.
If you live where it snows in the winter, you need to keep
in mind these extra safety precautions. Snow and ice make it easy to slip and
fall. Follow these tips to stay safe this winter.
steps and walkways. Keep walkways shoveled or even better: hire someone to
shovel for you. Do not walk on icy or snowy sidewalks - always look for
sidewalks that are dry and have been cleared.
- Wear boots
with non-skid soles. This is especially important in winter. You will be
less likely to slip when you walk.
- If you
use a cane, replace the rubber tip before it is worn smooth. You might also
buy (at a medical supply store) an ice pick-like attachment that fits onto the
end of the cane to help keep you from slipping when you walk.
Remember These Tips
- Pick up
things correctly. Bend at knees, rather than the waist, to pick up items.
Even items you may perceive as light may put strain on your back.
- Post no
soliciting signs. This will minimize your trips to the door for unwanted
sale pitches. No soliciting signs will also help prevent intruders.
- Wear your
medical alert pendant. Wear your pendant everywhere you go so you always
have quick access to help. Your home medical
alert system covers a range of about two football fields so you will stay
protected both in your home and yard.
- Aim to
have a low or no maintenance yard. Who wants to spend all their time raking
leaves and mowing the lawn? These tasks become increasingly difficult as we age.
Plan ahead and invest in landscaping that is low-maintenance.
access to shoveling services in winter and yard maintenance in summer. If
your yard does require a good amount of upkeep, make sure there are yard
maintenance and snow shoveling services available in your area. Your local
teenagers are a good resource.
Stay Safe Outdoors
Your aging in place plan should include your yard as well as
the inside of your home. Your safety should be a number one priority. When your
home is ready to age in place, you will be ready to live retirement to the
fullest, without worry. Get your garden and yard ready so that can spend your
time doing what you love.
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