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Seniors and Kitchen Safety: Tips for the “Heart of the Home”

The kitchen can be a dangerous place for seniors and elders. Not only are seniors over the age of 65 more likely to be injured in a kitchen fire, they are more likely to suffer a fall injury due to: items stored out of reach—both too high and too low—and the likelihood that meals are carried to eat in another room.

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Ensuring that your senior loved one remains as self-sufficient as possible, and yet safe around the house requires a delicate balance. For those caring for a person with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia, that challenge increases ten-fold. Caregivers providing care for someone with Alzheimer’s must be diligent about identifying potential dangers in the home.

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More Canadians are choosing to “age in place.” That is, they opt to stay in their homes rather than move to alternative retirement settings. But that often means they must modify their homes so it’s not a danger to their safety and health when their physical abilities change.

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As more and more older adults are choosing to age in place, the need for home modifications to accommodate physical changes in people is growing. Ideally, homes for aging adults would meet universal design standards, which make structures inherently accessible to older people and those with disabilities. Many homeowners, however, hesitate to upgrade existing homes because of the cost.

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