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Fire Safety Tips for Older Adults

Elderly Care in Katy TX: Fire Safety Tips for Older Adults

Plan of emergency escape routes as seen in hotels or official buildings

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), people aged 65 and older are twice as likely to die or be injured in a fire as younger adults. And, the U.S. Fire Association says that by the age of 85, the risk raises to 3.8 times as likely. This means that fire safety is something that seniors can’t afford to ignore. To keep your aging relative safe from fires in the home, it’s essential that they are aware of and follow fire safety rules. Below are some tips to keep older adults safe.

Have an Escape Plan

Create an escape plan that takes into account the senior’s abilities. Make sure they practice the plan and know where to go once they are safely outside of the house. Also, remind them to get out of the house before calling 911. They should carry their mobile phone outside with them or go to a neighbor’s house to make the call. Glasses, mobile phone, and hearing aids should be kept at the senior’s bedside at night so they can grab them quickly as they leave. An elderly care provider can practice the plan with them and make sure necessary items are close to the bed at bedtime.

Be Careful with Cigarettes

The New York City Fire Department says that smoking materials are the leading cause of fires that kill older adults. If your aging relative does not smoke, don’t allow others to smoke in their home. If they do smoke, encourage them to follow these tips:

  • Don’t leave lit cigarettes unattended in ashtrays.
  • Don’t set ashtrays on the arms of couches or chairs.
  • Before disposing of cigarette butts, put them in water to make sure they are completely out.
  • Never smoke in bed or while lying down.
  • Don’t allow anyone to smoke around oxygen tanks.
  • Elderly care providers can remind older adults who smoke to be careful. They can also make certain all cigarettes are completely out before the senior goes to bed.

Keep Smoke Alarms in Working Order

Test smoke alarms regularly and change the batteries a few times per year. If your aging relative has hearing loss, make sure the smoke alarms are equipped with flashing lights or uses vibration to alert them. There should be a smoke alarm in every bedroom and outside of the bedrooms, too. They should also be on every level of the home. An elderly care provider can test alarms and replace batteries, eliminating the need for older adults to climb step ladders to do it themselves.

Sources

https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/older_adults.html
http://www.nyc.gov/html/fdny/pdf/safety/fire_safety_education/2010_02/09_fire_safety_for_seniors_english.pdf
https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/By-topic/People-at-risk/Older-adults

If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in Katy, TX, please call the caring staff at At Your Side Home Care. We will answer all of your senior care questions. Call today: (832) 271-1600.

Donna Wrabel, LMSW

For most of us, the word "home" evokes warm feelings of comfort, security and well-being. For older adults, home also means holding tight to cherished memories and maintaining self-esteem and independence. When illness, injury or age make life a little more challenging, remaining at home in a comfortable, familiar environment encourages recovery and enhances the quality of life. Home can be defined as a private residence, an independent or assisted living facility or even a short term stay in the hospital, we recognize the additional benefits provided by a personal, professional assistant.

Our Certified Nurse Aides, 24-Hour Live-in Assistants and Home Health Aides are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also provide the security and confidence of 24-hour Telephone Assistance, so fast, reliable help is always available when it's needed. To learn more about our homecare services see our homecare services page.

Different people need different levels of homecare. To meet the requirements of our clients, At Your Side Homecare maintains consistent staffing levels of caring professionals. Homecare service is available for as little as a few hours a week, or as many as 24 hours a day, seven days a week