Ageing in Place - A Growing Trend!

Sep 28 , 2021

Julie-Anne Dietz

Ageing in Place - A Growing Trend!

Ageing In Place is a growing trend in which seniors plan to continue living in their own homes for as long as possible instead of moving to senior housing. Many aging individuals prefer this approach, but it is not without challenges, especially as one’s health declines and needs increase. 

Making sure your loved ones are safe, healthy, and happy in their own homes as they age is of primary importance. It is the key to helping the elderly age well at home. We need to ensure that the Activities of Daily Living (ADL's) are met efficiently and safely.

For those ageing Australians, as they get older, living independently in their own home can become more difficult. 

Asking for help doesn't mean losing independence, it can mean quite the opposite!

Getting a little help with daily activities, having the right supportive products to assist, accessing the services that are available and really importantly, having advocates around for support .

 

Help at home looks different for different people.

It may mean getting help with cooking and shopping. It could be receiving personal care to bathe, dress and get in and out of bed. It may even mean getting modifications to improve the safety and movement around the house.

Most importantly, getting help at home can enable you to continue to live independently in your own home for as long as possible.

The basic ADL activities are typically listed as:

  • Eating
  • Functional Mobility
  • (moving from one place to another while performing activities such getting in and out of bed, in and out of a chair)
  • Dressing
  • Bathing or Showering
  • Personal Hygiene
  • (includes brushing/styling hair, shaving, grooming activities)
  • Toilet Hygiene
  • (includes getting to the toilet, self-cleaning, getting up from the toilet

In addition, we also need to consider Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs).

IADLs most often refer to the following types of activities:

  • Cleaning and Maintaining the Home
  • Cooking and Preparing Meals
  • Shopping and Buying Necessities
  • Running Errands (Moving within the community)
  • Managing Money and Finances
  • Communicating (Through phone or other devices)
  • Taking Prescribed Medications

 Elder Care Products and Equipment

Fortunately, there are many adaptive products and safety devices that can be used to help make this arrangement a successful one.

DisAbility equip online prides itself on carrying a range of products to assist those living at home. Further, we offer a product sourcing service - if you find something your need, we are happy to find it for you. 

As (ADLs) become more challenging, assistive devices may be used to extend a senior’s independence. Evaluate the current living environment to assess if any of the following items could be used to make a senior’s home safer and more accessible.

  • Personal Alert System (a wearable electronic device designed to summon help in an emergency)
  • Toilet seat riser
  • Bidet attachment for toilet
  • Grab bars for the bathroom near the toilet and shower
  • Hand-held shower head
  • Bathtub/shower transfer bench
  • Stepless/walk-in bathtub or shower
  • Adjustable bed
  • Waterproof mattress/mattress pads
  • Over-bed table
  • Disposable incontinence underpads (sometimes referred to as “chux”)
  • Bed railings
  • Adequate lighting throughout the home, including night lights
  • Medication organizer or alarmed dispenser
  • Button loopers and zipper pulls for easier dressing
  • Adaptive clothing and shoes
  • Touch-tone telephones with large buttons, speaker or hands-free capabilities, and/or text capability for those who are deaf or hard of hearing (TTY or TDD)
  • Talking clocks and wristwatches for seniors with poor vision
  • Low Vision Aids to assist with reading and other activities
  • Kitchen tools that make opening cans and jars, peeling vegetables, and cutting and dicing ingredients easier and safer
  • Specialized eating utensils and dinnerware for easier dining
  • Automatic shut-off safety devices for kitchen appliances
  • “Reacher/grabber” tools for seniors who have weak grip strength and/or limited mobility
  • Ramps for entryways with steps
  • Stair lifts for multi-story homes
  • Sturdy railings along all stairways
  • Mobility aids for seniors who have difficulty getting around the house (e.g. cane, rollator, walker, wheelchair, motorized scooter)
  • Baskets or other accessories for mobility equipment to assist in carrying items
  • Lift chairs for those who have difficulty getting in and out of a seated position
     

    Credit: Helping The Elderly At Home | Updated for 2021 | AgingInPlace.org