Most people take driving for granted, but as they get older, driving can become more dangerous. As we age, our driving abilities change. When we get older, certain senses and abilities begin to diminish and we may have trouble seeing or hearing. Aches and pains can slow down our reaction time and our ability to focus may lessen.
These changes need to be taken into consideration, especially while driving. Here are some of the essential tips to help seniors stay safe on the road.
Get your vision and hearing checked regularly
Depending upon your age, get your vision tested at least once or twice a year. Eye doctors can detect and correct many vision related issues such as cataracts. Also get your corrective lenses checked so as to ensure that you are wearing accurate prescription glasses. Good vision will make safe driving for older adults much easier. In addition, it is important to get a hearing test done every three years. Also, make sure the inside of the car is as quiet as possible to avoid any distractions.
Keep your car maintained
Another important step to ensure safe driving is proper maintenance of your car. Make sure that your engine oil is changes, filters are changed, fluids replaced, tire pressure checked and brakes checked. This will keep your vehicle in good condition. Lights and signals of your car should function properly.
Be cognizant of your surroundings
Increase safety by becoming aware of your surroundings. Eliminate any activity that may cause distraction and divert your attention from driving. Maintain your speed within the speed limit range and ensure that there is a safe driving distance from the car in front of you.
Know your limitations
Avoid driving for long hours as it may lead to fatigue or exhaustion. Take rest in between if you are going for a long drive.
As we age, we are already on cerain medications for chronic diseases. Some of these medications affect the concentration or focus, which can be quite dangerous while driving. Be sure to watch out for medications that cause drowsiness or make the person feel dizzy.
Keep yourself prepared
All elderly drivers should keep a roadside kit in the car. This kit should include basic first aid, flares or warning light, tire equipment and extra cell phone batteries.
Another great resource is AAA with their senior driving Expo. Check out this video:
Driving safety for seniors is more than just about being able to drive. Remember, good drivers are safe drivers. Elderly people need to be extra cautious on road to ensure their safety.
Being safe inside our homes should an important concern for all of us, especially for seniors. Seniors can be an easy target for criminals. Scams, frauds and financial abuse are some of the common crimes against senior citizens.
As a caregiver, preventing accidents and ensuring that your loved ones are secure is your top priority. Here are a few things that you can do to help provide a safer home for your senior parent or other relative.
Close the doors and windows- Lock your doors and windows, no matter how safe the neighborhood is. Make sure the front as well as the back access doors are made of solid wood or metal. If you are installing a glass front door, use unbreakable safety glass that has privacy film installed. Don’t neglect windows and install security film on the inside of the glass for better protection.
Minimize trip and fall hazards- Falls can be devastating for elderly people, and can lead to serious injuries and slower recovery. To avoid tripping accidents, safeguard your home with simple precautions. For example, install a walk-in shower so that it becomes easier to enter and exit. Install support bars in the toilet and near the bath tub to help elderly person get in and out of the tub. Replace fraying carpets and remove loose rugs or floor mats to avoid falling. Place appliances close to the electrical circuits so that they are close to the outlet.
Light the walkway properly-Another major contributor of indoor accidents is improper lighting. Poor outdoor lighting also poses a security risk. To ensure safety at home, make sure the outdoor as well as indoor areas are well lit. The hallways, driveways, porch and backyard areas should have proper lighting.
Organize common items and furniture-To improve safety for senior citizens, it is important to organize common items so that the items most often used are in convenient within the reach places. Adjust the height of furniture and arrange them in such a way so that it is easier for the seniors to access and use.
Install a good home security system-Rise in crime rate and increased awareness is making elderly people embrace the security systems. The right home security system helps to make your home and parents safer from the threats of thefts, vandalism and accidents. Installing CCTV system in your home helps you in your strive to maintain high security in your property, and in turn offers you peace of mind.
In any ideal home setting, health emergencies are likely to occur from time to time. Medical emergencies may be very scary but if you are ready and prepared for a sudden issue, it can make the situation easier to handle if one should ever arise.
The following are some of the emergency supplies one should have at home.
• Wound Dressing Materials
Small or minor injuries can always be handled at home using the right emergency tools. It is therefore very important to have items such as medical tape for scrapes and cuts, bandages and clean gauze.
• Supplies for Wound Cleaning
It is practically useless having dressings for a wound without having the area cleaned first. Cleaning wounds with appropriate materials can help to prevent infections in the wounds. It is, therefore, advisable to have alcohol wipes and hydrogen peroxide that are good cleaning implements. Regular soap can work in a pinch.
Tweezers are perfect solutions when objects like slivers, thorns get lodged underneath one’s skin. You will require tweezers to get them removed from the skin.
• A Thermometer
It is a brilliant idea to invest in an oral or a digital thermometer because these items often work fast to read out your temperature. They are also very simple to use. The majority of people have memories of our parents feeling on our forehead and placing a thermometer below our armpits when were feverish.
• Cold Packs
It a good idea to keep cold packs on hands since lots of stings, bruises and sprains takes place during a year. When you apply these to any of the aforementioned injuries the moment the injury occurs, it will prevent possible swelling and numb pain.
• Over the Counter Medications
There are numerous medications that you can purchase at drug stores for various maladies. Drugs like ibuprofen and acetaminophen help relieve pain. For victims of allergies, Benadryl is their best tool to have at home for any emergency. Various cold medicines can also relieve one from coughs, stuffy noses and possibly sleeplessness that comes with these health problems. The given prescriptions should also be kept at hand to avoid misuse of drugs.
• Emergency Phone Numbers
The emergency phone numbers should include your dentist, doctor and even poison control. The contacts are very essential in case of emergencies.
• A Defibrillator
It is very smart to ensure you have heart defibrillators around for easy use if need be. You can, therefore, buy this health supplies for emergency home use.
Having these emergency supplies will enable you to tackle most emergencies that may arise in any home. It is, therefore, a very smart idea to take precautions to ensure the safety of your loved ones in the event of a disaster.