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Home Security For Families Living With Alzheimer’s

Home Security For Families Living With Alzheimer’s

Families today have many varieties of living arrangements. Parents and children are cohabitating during more and more of life. Some recent college graduates are heading home to save money after school, and many elderly parents are moving back in with their grown children. When independent living and/or home health care grow too expensive or impractical, it just makes sense to have everyone under the same roof. However, accepting a person, parent, and/or relative with Alzheimer’s into our home will require more than just sprucing up the spare bedroom. Follow these important tips to make your home safe and secure for a resident with Alzheimer’s.

Lighting. Make sure all areas of the home are well lit in order to provide maximum possible visibility. Concentrate on areas of the home where there are steps up or down, and the top, bottom, and middle of staircases.

Outlets. Use child protective outlets to cover all open sockets.

Access to the Home. Have at least one door with a fingerprint or code access just in case the person with Alzheimer’s locks you out. Hiding a key is another option that many families use, but keep in mind this is threatening to your general home security as burglars or intruders may be able to find it and break in. This can result in harm, damage and loss not only to your home and belongings but possibly to your loved ones. It is better in this instance to let technology take charge and use a keyless, yet secure, lock.

Display Emergency Info. Make sure every emergency number is clearly displayed near or on each and every phone around the home just in case the person with Alzheimer’s needs to call out for assistance. Switch all phones to cord phones, so that the phone unit cannot be easily misplaced or lost.

Lock Up Dangerous Chemicals and Substances. While many people only go as far as to lock up the medicine cabinet, think ahead and lock up everything from potent everyday chemical cleaning products, to alcohol, cigarettes, and household chemicals and cleaners that might be found in the garage or garden shed. It’s impossible to know what might be mistaken for an acceptable substance to use or consume by a person with Alzheimer’s, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Create Open Spaces. While it might not be the most attractive way to arrange your furniture, try to create as many open spaces as possible to prevent slips, trips and falls around the house. Avoid low tables that are not against a wall, ottomans, stools, and other such items that are easily mobile but not so easily visible. Keep stairs and common areas free of clutter like laundry, books, magazines, newspapers, shoes, etc.

Remove Tools and Weapons. When worried about home security, many families lock up their tools and weapons not only to keep unauthorized family members from accidentally picking up the wrong item, but to keep intruders from turning any given tool into a weapon to use against the homeowner. Use the same strategy and lock up anything that could possibly be considered a weapon, or could harm the person with Alzheimer’s if used incorrectly.

Install a Monitored Home Security System. In the event of an emergency, it’s important to have a fast and easy way for the person with Alzheimer’s to get help even without having to call for it. Choose a system with intruder, fire, flood and carbon monoxide protection that alerts both family members and authorities at the first sign of trouble.