Tuesday, May 24, 2022

5 Home Modifications Every Home Should Have to Accommodate Aging in Place

Whether you're in your early 60s or entering retirement, there's a good chance you'll want to age in place. That means remaining in your home and modifying it as needed to accommodate any physical changes that come with aging and increase safety for senior living. 

Unfortunately, your home may need to be modified for several reasons, including changes to your vision, hearing, and mobility. For example, going up and down the stairs could become more difficult, or you may find yourself fumbling for the light switch more often. 

Luckily, you can make many simple modifications to your home to ensure a safe and comfortable environment for years to come! In this article, we will list some essential home modifications for aging in place. 

While some of these changes may seem small, they can have a significant impact on your quality of life. We've put together a list of five home modifications every home should have to accommodate aging in place.

walk-in tub and grab bars
Grab bars and Walk-in tub

Grab Bars 

The first modification you should consider is installing grab bars in your bathroom. As we age, our balance can change, and it can become more challenging to stand up from a sitting position. Grab bars provide excellent support and stability for getting in and out of the shower or bathtub and can help prevent dangerous falls and injuries. Grab bars are also relatively inexpensive and easy to install. You can find them at most home improvement stores or order them online. 

Raised Electrical Outlets 

Another substantial modification is to install raised electrical outlets. It can become more difficult to bend down and reach for things on the floor due to changes in mobility. Raised electrical outlets make it easier to plug-in appliances and electronics and help prevent falls. They are also safer because they reduce the risk of electrical shock.

stair lift
Stair Lift
 Stair lifts

If your home has stairs, another modification is installing a stair lift. Stair lifts provide a safe and easy way to get up and down the stairs and can significantly improve your mobility if you have difficulty climbing stairs. Stairs are dangerous for seniors and can be very difficult to navigate if you have limited mobility. A stair lift can give you the independence to move around your home without fear of falling. 


Walk-In Tubs 

Another modification to consider is installing a walk-in tub. Walk-in tubs are designed for people with limited mobility and can make bathing much safer and more accessible. Walk-in tubs also have a lot of beneficial features, such as built-in seats, grab bars, and non-slip surfaces. They are an excellent investment for anyone looking to age in place. They're also excellent for hydrotherapy and can help with pain relief. They're also easy to clean and maintain. Although they may be expensive, they are worth the investment. 


Finally, you may also consider installing a ramp if you have steps leading into your home. Ramps help provide an easy way to get in and out of your home and can help prevent falls. Depending on your needs, you can place them either inside or outside your home. There are many different types of ramps available, so be sure to do your research to find the best one for you. 

Wrapping Up 

What we listed above is just a glimpse of the many modifications you can make to your home to accommodate aging in place. By making these simple changes, you can ensure a safe and comfortable environment for years to come. Home modifications are meant to help you age in place and live independently for as long as possible. With home modifications, you can help prevent falls and injuries in your house. These changes can also help you save money in the long run. If you're considering making any modifications to your home, be sure to consult with a professional to ensure they are done safely and correctly. 

Author Bio David Clark:

David Clark is the CEO of Basement Guides with several years of experience in basement-related problems and home safety. He has written and published many resources and guides related to senior home safety, grants, and home modifications. David is currently working to spread the word about senior home safety and health through resourceful guides and articles.


Thanks David for a great article!

Disclosure: AboutAgingParents.com participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.


Photos from DepositPhotos



Monday, February 21, 2022

Hope Springs Eternal: Navigating Life as Newlyweds in Your Golden Years


While it’s never too late to enjoy the pleasures of wedded bliss in your latter years, it’s important to remember that you and your new spouse face different obstacles to those of a young married couple. It’s not every night you can have a date at the ballpark, seeing the World Champion Atlanta Braves or saying “LA Dodgers here we go”. Senior marriage is a challenge but, with a plethora of life experiences backing you both, there’s every hope that you can converge onto one path and have plenty of fun in the process. About Aging Parents has a few pointers on how to navigate your new life together.


Find the Right Home


Physical limitations are an inevitable part of aging and it’s important to keep this in mind if you’re selecting a new home. If you aren’t sure whether to rent or buy, consider the pros and cons of both options as they relate to your lifestyle—it can be a lot of hassle purchasing a property if you like to travel or think you might move again in the near future. On the other hand, if you choose to make an existing property your marital home, This Old House explains that it’s possible to modify this to provide improved accessibility in the years to come.  


Maintain Your Property


Whether you’ve chosen to rent or buy your home, it’s more than likely that routine maintenance will be needed from time to time. To avoid potential injuries that may be harder to recover from as you age, it’s best to contract a service provider to assist you with regular tasks such as gutter cleaning.


Blocked drains can lead to flooding during rainy seasons, so in order to avoid any potential catastrophes, ensure that you’re dealing with professionals and vet the service provider of your choosing by checking their ratings and reviews. Not only will a good contractor be able to fix any existing problems, but they’ll also alert you to any potential issues that may arise in the near future. 


Combine Finances


Your financial status in your latter years can look vastly different from when you were in your 20s, so combining finances might be a little more complex too. During this process, it’s advisable to double-check that your insurance policies are up to date and that you’ve updated your emergency contact details wherever necessary.


Whether you’ve retired already or intend on doing so in the near future, Capital Group notes that you’ll want to be sure that you are making wise financial investments that will cover you and your spouse in the event of disability or serious illness. If the decision to move one or both of you to a skilled nursing facility or nursing home should arise, have a plan in place for this scenario as early as possible. This begins with researching what facilities are in your area, then narrow your search by visiting your top choices and asking about what services are offered.


Estate Planning


It’s natural that you’ll want to include your new spouse in your will so that they are taken care of in the event of unforeseen circumstances. Contracting an attorney that specializes in estate planning will make it easier to remain prepared for the future. Living wills are an uncomfortable but necessary topic and talking about them will ensure that you and your partner are on the same page when it comes to the sensitive matter. Since we cannot be certain of when accidents or illnesses could happen, it’s vital to have these conversations as early on in your marriage as possible.


Starting a marriage in your latter years can feel like a wild adventure, but don’t forget to be mindful of the practical things as you’re enjoying your new married life. Taking care of the nitty-gritty details sooner rather than later will leave you with peace of mind and a smoother shared tomorrow.


This article is brought to you by About Aging Parents. For more information, contact us today!


Guest post by Millie Jones from SeniorWellness.info


Photo by Kampus Production via Pexels

Monday, January 31, 2022

6 Perfect Gifts for the Health-Conscious Senior in Your Life

Guest post from Rhonda Underhill

Changing your health for the better is never easy. For seniors with long-held habits, it can feel nearly
impossible. If your senior loved ones are trying to make changes to improve their health, why not give a gift that helps them along their journey to healthier aging?


About Aging Parents understands how hard it can be to find the perfect gift for someone you really care about. These five holiday gifts are a great way to show your support and help your senior loved ones achieve their health and wellness goals in 2022.

Fitness devices and gadgets

Finding the motivation to get up and exercise can be difficult regardless of your age. However, there are some modern gadgets and devices that can help seniors who need a little incentive to get off the couch. A smartwatch, for example, can help them track how many calories they’ve burned, how many steps they’ve taken, and other important information.

Convenient nutrition

A balanced diet is one of the pillars of senior health, but age-related changes make it tough to keep up with home-cooked meals. Whether your seniors struggle to get to the grocery store, lack motivation for meal planning, or are simply habituated to an unhealthy diet, a meal kit delivery service simplifies healthy eating. With a subscription service like Blue Apron or Hello Fresh delivering healthy ingredients in easy-to-follow recipes right to their door, adopting a healthy diet couldn’t be easier.


Another way to keep proper nutrition super simple is with a superfoods-charged beverage. With the right ingredients blended into one antioxidant and nutrition laden option, seniors can simply sip vitamins and minerals to keep them strong and healthy. Pair it with a durable, personalized to-go tumbler for the ideal gift!

Send them back to school

Seniors are in a unique position to understand the old saying, We never stop learning. That’s why helping them go back to school – whether helping them to register or paying for a class – is a great way to give them something positive to focus on. Also, the flexibility of online programs means virtually any schedule and interest can be easily accommodated.

A YMCA membership

The YMCA is the perfect place for seniors who want to become more active but are intimidated by gyms. While YMCAs have all the fitness amenities of other gyms, they also offer senior-friendly classes like aquatic workouts for people with arthritis, yoga for seniors, and balance training. Better yet, many YMCAs offer discounted membership rates for older adults.

Furry or feathered companionship

Pet ownership offers amazing health perks to seniors. The benefits range from improving heart health to improved socialization. Unfortunately, pet ownership is also something many seniors set aside, usually due to the commitment it involves, yet they often miss the companionship of an animal.


If that sounds like your loved one, consider encouraging them to add a furry or feathered companion. Some pets are particularly well-suited to seniors, like birds and rabbits, and in some respects, they are smaller commitments than some pets, such as in terms of lifespan, space, and responsibility.


You can even get all the goodies for your loved one so they can pick the individual animal that really speaks to them. For instance, bird lovers might enjoy a birdcage kit, and there are full outdoor setups for rabbits. A pet companion can be an amazing pick-me-up, and be the mental and physical boost your loved one loves most.

A rideshare gift card

Senior health goes beyond the physical. The National Institute on Aging points out that maintaining an active social life is just as important for healthy aging, especially when it comes to a senior’s mental health. Unfortunately, physical limitations make it difficult for some seniors to get out and connect with friends.


If it’s no longer safe for your senior loved ones to drive, give them the gift of transportation with a giftcard to Lyft or Uber. With access to ride-share services, seniors can get out of the house without getting behind the wheel — and you can enjoy the peace of mind of knowing they’ll get to their destination safely.


Whether your senior loved ones are in good health and just need a little something extra or have a long way to go toward their wellness goals, there’s a gift that can help them get there. However, while these gifts will set seniors on the path to better health, there’s one gift money can’t buy: your support. Whether it’s rides to the gym or motivational text messages, make sure your senior loved ones know you’re cheering them on.


Image via Unsplash 




Thursday, January 20, 2022

Golden Years, Golden Opportunity to Become an Entrepreneur


If you’ve never been an entrepreneur before, rejoice. Your senior years are an especially great time to expand your interest, do something you love, and earn an income along the way. But, before you get started, it’s best to at least have an idea of what to expect.


About Aging Parents offers the following advice for seniors. For active seniors, one way to stay engaged is to start their own business during their golden years.


Home Business Basics


Starting a business today often means opening up from the comfort of your kitchen table, private home
office, or living room. There are many benefits of running a business from home, including being able to control your own schedule. As a senior, you might have plenty of time on your hands, but you want to make sure that you use that time in a way that makes you the happiest, healthiest, and most whole. Opening a home business means you aren’t driving on the roads and you can supplement your income by focusing on the things that you enjoy the most.


Possible Business Ideas


If you do not yet know what you’d like to do, you have options. Before you make any decision, consider your experience, mobility level, and how much money you have available to get started. A few low-cost startups here include:


      Writer. As a freelance writer, you can lend your wisdom to e-books, blogs, and more. As long as you have a computer, a mastery of the English language, and the ability to meet deadlines, you can earn an income from home.


      Seamstress. All those years ago when your grandmother taught you how to quilt might pay off now. As a seamstress, your sewing machine can earn you more than $70,000, depending on where you live and how much you want to work. You can monogram, make custom clothing, or hem wedding dresses.


      Tutor. Tutoring is an excellent income opportunity for retired teachers. Care.com explains that becoming a tutor means deciding which subjects you want to teach, choosing who you want to work with, and getting familiar with your state’s curriculum.


Yes, You Can Go Back To School


If you don’t have experience in the area where you’d like to start a business, you can go back to school at any time and at any age. Look for a business program that teaches management, strategy, and general operational procedures. You might even be eligible for scholarships based on your age, income, or personal history.


Income and Social Security


Many new retirees mistakenly believe they can’t work and receive Social Security benefits. Fortunately, this isn’t true, and depending on your age and income, you may be able to work without losing any benefits. If you reach full retirement age, which as of 2022 is 67, you won’t be dinged. However, if you were born prior to January 2, 1960, you will lose half your benefits for every two dollars you earn in excess of the threshold of $19,560. If you’re not sure how to calculate your earnings and your Social Security benefits, contact your financial advisor. If you don’t have one, spend some time looking at options in your area, but make sure to avoid scams and steer clear of anyone claiming that there is no risk to your finances in retirement.


Starting a business in your senior years is exciting. It’s a chance to do all of the things that you wanted during the trenches of your career. But there are things to know before you get started, and the more you prepare yourself now, the sooner you’ll be ready for success when it comes knocking.


About Aging Parents is a blog for seniors and caregivers alike. Kathy Quan RN BSN PHN invites you to bookmark the page to stay up to date on news and resources pertinent to you.

This is a guest post from Donna Erickson. Donna Erickson is a retired public educator. She created Fit Memory with a few friends as a way to promote wellness among senior citizens with the hopes it will help inspire others to make the most of their golden years.


Photo by Ron Lach from Pexels



Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Find Fulfilling Volunteer Opportunities for a Purpose-Filled Retirement with These 3 Networking Tips


As a senior, you may find yourself wondering how to fill up newly freed-up time. Volunteering is a terrific option that allows you to stay productive even as you relax and enjoy the fruits of a life of hard work. You wouldn't be alone, either. Statistics show that 28% of individuals aged 65 and older reported engaging in volunteer activities in 2021. Volunteering allows you to try new things and comes with advantages such as connecting with others. Research also shows that it raises happiness levels. There are many volunteer opportunities out there that cover a wide variety of interests and skills. Here are three networking tips to help you locate the one that best suits you. 


1. Connect Over the Internet

The internet is filled with websites that can help you find volunteer opportunities by either providing recommendations or directly connecting you with organizations. For example, VolunteerMatch allows you to search for ones close to your home and then click on listings you are interested in to start getting involved. Job boards are another place you can look, as is your local chamber of commerce. Nonprofits occasionally post on job sites to search for volunteers. For example, by visiting freelance job boards, you may be able to find volunteer work as a translator.


Social media sites such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook are also excellent for finding volunteer opportunities. Post that you are searching for volunteer opportunities and briefly outline your relevant skills, and you will be surprised by the number of people who offer suggestions or reach out to see if you are a good fit for their organization's needs. 


If you don't have the time or transportation means for in-person volunteering, virtual volunteering is flexible. Among the available options are Crisis Text Line, Project Gutenberg, Zooniverse, Librivox, and Cards for a Cause. While some may have more stringent requirements, others ask nothing more of you than making an account to get started. 


2. Contact Specific Organizations 

If you already have an organization in mind, initiating direct contact may be the way to go. Write an email or even send a physical letter to the main office. Contact staff members through social media asking if they need volunteers or for the chance to talk to them. Before doing so, do your research. Demonstrate that your interest is genuine by knowing the facts, including what the company does and its values.


3. Reach Out After Meeting 

Don't get into contact once and never reach out again. In the busy rush of life, individuals from charity organizations may forget you. One of the best ways to avoid this is to reach out again and remind them of who you are and your interest in volunteering for their company, whether that is through email, letter, social media, or phone. Maintain relationships with these people. 


Networking is vital to effective volunteering. Making use of available internet resources, taking the initiative, and contacting organizations and following up after initial contact can help you find the volunteer opportunity that gives you the most fulfillment and enjoyment. 


A guest post from Dan Hall


Photo credit: Pexels.com 


Thanks Dan!

Monday, December 27, 2021

Are You and Your Aging Parents All Up to Date on Vaccines?


A reminder to be sure you and your loved ones are up to date on all vaccines. For COVID your seniors should have gotten their booster shot by now, but if not, they should get one as soon as possible. 

Other important vaccinations to consider include the Pneumonia vaccine, the Shingles vaccine, and of course the annual Flu vaccine. Check with their physician to be sure they are all updated.  

If they (or you) will be around any young children especially infants and toddlers, it's important to be current on the whooping cough vaccine which is usually a combination with the tetanus and pertussis. This helps protect the small children who are very vulnerable to this disease.

Please be careful and don't get complacent with masking and hand washing. The Omicron variant of COVID is not as resistant to the vaccine as we'd like it to be. Cases can be mild and often don't require hospitalization for those who have been fully vaccinated, but with the senior population, there's no reason to take chances. 


Please remember to check out the Online Course Caring for Your Aging Parents for $12!


photo credit: https://depositphotos.com/stock-photos/vaccine-clinic.html?filter=all&qview=420878092 

Sunday, October 17, 2021

How To Handle Two Care Arrangements For Aging Parents

A guest post from Annabelle Harris


If your parents are still living but one is showing signs of aging faster than the other, you may be concerned that they’ll no longer be able to safely reside by each other's side. Unfortunately, this happens in cases where one parent is younger or healthier than their spouse. However, there are a few ways to make the transition into separate living arrangements easier for everyone. Here, we cover a few topics that can help you as you help your aging parents make a life-changing decision.


Budget Considerations


One of the first things that you must consider is their budget. Can your aging parents afford for one to live in their current home and another to move to assisted or nursing care? If the answer is no, there are options. The first is to help them take out a reverse mortgage; the second is to sell their home so that they can move into a senior community with multiple care levels available.


Taking out a reverse mortgage is a process where the bank essentially buys equity while your parents are still alive and still live in the home. If one must move to more hands-on care arrangements, the other can stay at home without a mortgage. They receive a monthly payment, which can be used to cover nursing care for the other spouse. According to the FTC, the spouse remaining in the home must continue to pay taxes, maintain the home, and keep an active homeowners insurance policy.


Selling the home outright may be an option for those that can move into a CCRC (continuing care retirement community). This is a senior-oriented living arrangement that can change over time without having to move to a new location. A CCRC may start out as independent living and allow the residents to seamlessly move into assisted and then memory care without additional fees. Both parents may live together while one receives more hands-on assistance than the other. This is an expensive arrangement, and you will need to understand your loved one’s assets, including how much home equity they have. To calculate this correctly, check the current market value of the property against the mortgage balance.


Practical And Emotional Concerns


Chances are, if one of your parents is transitioning into nursing care, the other has been the primary caregiver for many years. Taking this labor of love off of them can be emotional, and your loved one may feel no longer needed. Although they likely felt anxious and exhausted through the process, losing these responsibilities can make them feel as though their “better half” has moved on. Remind the healthier parent that they are still needed, and that the reasons behind them no longer providing hands-on care are so that they can care for themselves. If one parent has moved into Alzheimer’s or dementia care, you can involve your other parent in deciding on treatment choices such as memory training, psychotherapy, and medication.


Practical issues to consider are when, how, and where your parents will get to interact. It might be best for as many family members as possible to visit as often as possible for the first couple of weeks. The Family Caregiver Alliance explains that outings, such as to lunch or dinner, might not be a wise idea in the early days, particularly if their memory issues are significant. It takes work, but, eventually, both parents will adjust to their new living arrangements. It will also help if you visit the non-institutionalized parent often so that they are not wracked with loneliness.


When only one parent needs a helping hand, deciding on how to handle two living arrangements is a challenge. However, there are many hurdles associated with aging, and this is just one. Take solace in knowing that you have options for both parents that may keep them together. And, if they can no longer share a bed, there’s no reason they can’t share a visit to keep their bonds as strong as ever.



Image via Pexels

Thanks for these great tips Annabelle!