Since 1963, May has been celebrated as Older Americans Month in the U.S. It’s a time to appreciate, celebrate, and care for the older members of society, whose experience and perspective provides valuable insight into everyday life. The year 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of Older Americans Month, and this year’s theme for the month is “Unleash the Power of Age.”
Whether you have older family members, friends, or neighbors, there are many things you can do to help keep them safe and to help them share their knowledge and experience. Some safety tips you can employ for older loved ones living at home include:
- Keep a smoke detector and fire extinguisher on every floor, and test them regularly to ensure they work properly.
- Remove or tack down throw rugs to prevent tripping. Install handrails and non-slip surfaces in bathrooms to help prevent falls.
- Make sure stairwells, hallways, and other areas have good lighting. Consider using motion-sensing lights in the bathroom; these come on automatically when a person enters the bathroom at night, helping with vision.
Loved ones who live in nursing homes or assisted-care facilities may need help with specific safety and health issues. Consider these tips:
- Communicate regularly with nursing home staff about your loved one’s health status, medical needs, and personal comfort.
- Keep an eye open for unsafe or unhealthful conditions, like spills, broken tiles, or individuals left alone for extended periods of time. Watch your loved one’s physical and emotional health as well as activity in his or her bank accounts and the location of valuables.
When nursing home abuse or neglect occurs, the results can be devastating. An experienced Kentucky nursing home injury attorney can help you and your loved one protect your legal rights.