There’s no place like home, especially as we age and enter the senior years. Growing older doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time to leave the home you’ve grown to love. With some planning and assistance from friends or loved ones, many seniors are able to live independently in their homes for years. The following are some tips and resources to help yourself or a loved one maintain independence as long as possible:
Making the Home Safe
With some simple retrofitting and modifications, a home can become safer and more convenient for an aging adult. Caring.com offers steps to help make a home as safe as possible, including adding ramps or stair-lifts to help seniors get around homes with multiple levels. Making sure light switches are next to room entrances or installing remotes for lights can make moving from room to room easier. Health and safety monitoring devices also are great options for helping seniors feel more secure when living alone.
Carpooling with friends or loved ones or utilizing local transportation assistance can be a great way to get out of the house and run errands. Many local parks and recreation departments or public transportation offices offer community services to help seniors who no longer wish to drive. A list of local transportation programs for your area can also be found at seniordriving.aaa.com.
If mobility is a challenge, use a delivery service to have essentials such as groceries, medications or meals delivered to the home. Your local Area Agency on Aging organization can be a good resource for helping seniors find meal assistance programs such as Meals on Wheels. Check with your local pharmacies to inquire about home delivery for prescriptions or contact your insurance company to learn about mail-order pharmacy options.
Money Management Assistance
If you’re having trouble staying on top of the bills, the National Institute on Aging recommends asking a trusted loved one to help you stay organized and make payments on time. If you prefer to receive assistance from a professional, ask your local Area Agency on Aging for referrals to financial counselors or geriatric case managers. It’s also important to stay alert for scammers who target seniors. You can stay up to date with current scams and tips for protecting yourself on Capitol Federal’s Fraud Alerts page.
Do you have other tips or resources for helping seniors live independently? Share them here.