For the senior who chooses to stay at home and have a caregiver take care of the daily tasks she can no longer manage, her home should be up to high safety standards. Wheel chair ramps for the wheelchair-bound senior not only increase her safety in entering and exiting doorways, it also saves the back of the caregiver. Some renovations to the home might also be necessary for the wheelchair-bound senior. For example, narrow doorways or sharp turns between rooms may be difficult to maneuver with a wheelchair. The decision-maker should sit in the wheelchair and use it to maneuver through the entire house to find the trouble spots. Then a professional renovator can make the necessary adjustments.
A wheel chair ramp can easily be crafted by hand, but there are also professional pre-made ramps to choose from. Some shopping around is probably the best way to decide which kind would best suit your needs.
Besides installing wheelchair ramps to help the senior in a wheelchair, there are other ways to improve the safety of her home and how she maneuvers her wheelchair.
Strategies for wheelchair safety:
- Make sure the wheelchair fits the rider perfectly
- Make sure the brakes are fully functional and that your elderly loved one knows when and how to use them
- Keep the wheelchair in tip top shape by inspecting it often
- Electric wheelchairs also need regular inspection and tune-ups by a professional to keep all the automatic parts working properly
- Make sure that ramps used to wheel your loved one into a vehicle are stable and stationary
- All persons assisting the senior in the wheelchair should know the basics of wheelchair safety. In other words, don’t let a young child push Grandma around haphazardly without making sure the child knows what they are doing and is old enough to be careful and follow the rules you give him for safety in pushing her around.
Keeping your elderly loved one safe in her home is probably of paramount importance to you. Wheel chair ramps are part of that safety system along with walk in tubs, grab bars in the bathroom, removing throw rugs, keeping clutter out of hallways and keeping electrical cords out of walking pathways. Removing low-lying tables like coffee tables also increases home safety because they can be a tripping hazard. Check with your health professional to find out more ways to keep your elderly loved one safer in her home.