A home safety checklist will help you and your loved ones determine what changes need to be made, if any, to prevent common injuries in their home. When you sit down to go over the list take it one room at a time. If you need to, go in each room with the checklist and make notes together.
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Main Living Rooms
- Clear all walking paths – Any path through the house from the front door to each room, and from each room to the main rooms, should be clear of objects. Books, papers, and anything that can fall over or prevent a safe path should be removed. Rugs, or throw rugs can be rolled up and stored away and any doorway thresholds secured.
- Secure rugs and throw rugs – Rugs and smaller throw rugs can be tripped over easily. Use a double sided rug tape to secure rugs to the floor, or simply remove them.
- Stairways and Railings – If the stairs are carpeted check them for loose carpeting and secure the carpet to prevent slipping. Check the railings for missing or loose pieces that may cause someone holding on to it to lose balance. Repair any steps that are loose or broken.
- Check lighting – Lighting in all necessary areas should be bright and overhead to prevent any difficulty navigating the rooms. This is especially important for the stairways and halls where natural lighting may be absent in the home.
- Clear all walking paths – Clear any paths from the bed to the bathroom, and also to the bedroom door, to prevent any accidental falls at night. Clear areas near windows and be sure that curtains are easy to maintain and maneuver.
- Lighting – If possible, put a light on each side of the bed so that no matter what side they sleep on, when they wake up there is a light within reach. Consider a clapper light, tap lamp, or automated lighting to avoid fumbling for the switch.
- Secure furniture and TVs to walls – Bookcases and televisions can fall over and cause potential injuries. Secure all bookshelves and furniture to the wall to prevent injury.
- Bed railings and support bars – Bed rails help keep your loved ones from falling out of bed and a support bar can help them stand up and get out of bed safely.
- Shower and tub area – In a stand up shower or a tub, be sure to put slip prevention stickers or mats down. Install or add a shelf that is easy to reach for shampoos, soap and other toiletries.
- Grab bars and railings – A grab bar near the tub and shower will help prevent falls when someone is getting in and out.
- Secure rugs – Use rug tape to secure any bathroom rugs to prevent tripping.
- Appliances – Can your loved ones use the appliances in their kitchen safely? Check in with them and see if they are still confident working with the appliances in their home. If not, consider services that cater to your loved one's needs while no longer having to use these appliances.
- Kitchen Chairs – If the chairs slide easily that could potentially be a falling hazard. Use rubber stops on the bottoms of the chairs to prevent sliding and check the legs to make sure they are solid.
- Drawers and Cabinets – Organize the kitchen drawers to make finding utensils and cooking supplies easier. Move canned foods to lower shelves and lighter boxed food to the higher cabinet shelves. Consider a grabbing tool to help with reaching for canned or jarred foods.
Throughout the House
- Door knobs – Does your loved one have a difficult time turning door knobs? If so consider switching to door knobs with special handles to help turn them more easily.
- Fire Detectors – Check and replace all batteries. Install fire and smoke detectors in each room of the home and main hallways if there aren’t fire detectors present already.
- Lighting – The light switches all through the house should be in well-lit areas and should be easy to turn on and off.
- Water Heater – A water heater with scald protection will prevent any chance of accidental burns from hot water.