5 Crucial Fire Safety Tips for Older Adults

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Fire safety is something most older adults have learned about their entire lives. While your aging loved one already knows the basics, it might be time to brush up on a few tips that work best for seniors. Ideally, your fire prevention and evacuation plan should be reviewed on a regular basis, and you’ll want to make sure your parent is implementing these senior-friendly strategies. 

1. Try to Sleep on the Ground Floor

As your loved one gets older, using stairs can become more difficult. If the option is available, try to set up your parent’s bedroom on the ground floor to prevent falls. Being able to walk through a single level to exit the home could save valuable minutes in a life-or-death situation.

2. Use Multisensory Fire Alarms

Fire alarms are the best defense for detecting a fire in enough time to evacuate the home. If your loved one has serious hearing or vision loss, you’ll need to find a special type of alarm designed to warn people who can’t see or hear well. Special fire alarms are designed to generate flashing lights when they’re activated or vibrate under pillows to wake people up. 

If you need help keeping your loved one safe and comfortable at home, consider hiring a home caregiver. Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Oklahoma City respite care experts from Lifestar Home Care are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities. 

3. Arrange for Someone to Check Fire Alarms Regularly

Climbing up on a ladder might not be safe anymore, which could cause your loved one to overlook doing regular fire alarm checks. Check the alarms on a monthly basis. If any fail the test, replace them immediately. You’ll also want to keep batteries on hand to change them as needed. All fire alarm batteries should be replaced at least yearly, even if they’re still working. Many people choose familiar dates, such as their birthdays, that help them remember to do annual battery changes. 

4. Be Extra Cautious when Cooking

Many fires in seniors’ homes are started when they’re trying to cook simple meals. Your loved one should never leave the kitchen if he or she has something cooking on the stove. 

Seniors should also dress for fire safety. Make sure any robe or shirt sleeves don’t hang down far enough to make contact with a heat source, such as a gas burner. 

If possible, your parent should try to avoid cooking when tired. Prepping a few freezer meals ahead of time or asking someone else to help makes it easier to avoid an accidental house fire. 

Professional caregivers can help seniors age in place safely. Families looking for top-rated senior care providers can reach out to Lifestar Home Care. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.

5. Use Candles & Heaters Safely

Candles are often used for decorative purposes or as a light source during a power outage. Never allow candles to burn unattended. They should also be kept at least a foot away from flammable materials. 

Space heaters need to be kept three feet away from anything that could be burned or damaged by the high temperatures. Buying one with an automatic shutoff in case it gets knocked over is another way to increase safety. 

Many seniors prefer aging in place over moving to assisted living facilities. If your senior loved one needs assistance to remain safe and comfortable while living at home, reach out to Lifestar Home Care, a leading Oklahoma City home care service agency. Our dedicated in-home caregivers can assist with meal prep, bathing and grooming, exercise, medication reminders, and many other important tasks. For reliable in-home care services, contact us today.

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