Owners' Blog

Mobility Issues and Senior Safety

By Hilary and Greg Eldridge

Considering the fact that mobility loss is one of the most common reasons for senior falls and other safety risks, caregivers become more necessary as your loved ones age further. Regular daily tasks can become more dangerous with the loss of mobility, and home care can help. Mobility is necessary for many reasons, inside and outside the home. It also promotes healthy aging related to the basic human need for physical movement. If your senior gets to the point of the inability to move, it can cause so many more physical and health troubles. In order to prevent further troubles it is helpful to have the help of caregivers for your seniors

Assessing Your Senior’s Mobility

Difficulties walking are often used to assess mobility levels. This could be anything from balance to the ability to walk certain distances. There are also standardized tests of walking for gait speed calculation (a timed test) and some others. Self-reports are proven to be a positive measurement in their everyday environment and more relevant to daily life needs. While these tests may not easily identify your senior’s point along the course of mobility decline. Any of the available performance-based assessments may not be universally comparable to other tests, but they can be helpful in constantly measuring a single patient on their levels of mobility improvement over a certain period of time.

The Decline of Mobility

Declining mobility is usually seen when your senior attempts more demanding tasks, such as walking longer distances or running. This may not be limited to old age, but it could be indicative of the importance of watching for oncoming mobility or other health challenges. Even in mid-life, it is important to recognize small declines in mobility and start finding ways to increase performance. This is also a stage of functional decline, or changes in method, frequency, or time used in task performance or increased tiredness has been proposed as a preclinical disability. Especially when there is a decline of mobility there may be a need for caregivers to help your senior with daily life.

Top 5 Safety Issues Centered Around Mobility

Any of these issues below come either as a result of mobility loss or have the ability to worsen mobility loss. Considering the need for mobility in daily life, and the importance of maintaining a long and healthy life, healthy mobility is necessary as your loved one continues to age. For the reasons below, you may find it essential to provide caregivers to your seniors in order to keep them safe:

  • Slips and Falls: The main cause of in-home injuries, slips and falls can lead to great complications. More than injuries that are incredible costs involved with the medical treatment of those events.
  • Fires: Fires are a primary safety issue for the elderly. There are many ways to prevent, put out, and escape fires. Burns should be prevented at all costs.
  • Electric Shock: Electric shop is a very real safety issue for the elderly, and new technological devices brought into a home create a need for caution.
  • Medicine and accidental poisoning: Mixing prescriptions can be deadly, and it is important to take them as scheduled.
  • Improper Lighting: A very simple-to-fix safety issue for the elderly is improper lighting. Fixing lighting can help in many ways – falling, taking the wrong medications, even electric shock. A well-lit house will prevent stumbles, showcase loose wire, prevent cuts and burns, and assist in label and calendar reading. Here are some of the best ways to ensure proper lighting.

Caregivers can help with any of these issues or at least help to control them. They will help provide a better understanding of safety issues for your seniors by observing their daily routines, like where they walk, tasks they try to do on their own, whether they ask for assistance, and if they are careful with simple tasks like dressing. Everyone is different, including their different choices and how they move. Unfortunately, the dangers of mobility will eventually appear in even the safest homes.

Sources

https://eldercareanswers.com/caring-for-seniors-with-mobility-issues/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3567319/
https://seniorsmatter.com/safety-issues-for-the-elderly/

If you or an aging loved one is considering hiring caregivers in Sandy Springs, GA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers, call (678) 430-8511.