For many people, their home is their sanctuary. It is a place where they can relax and feel safe. But for the disabled, it can often be difficult to navigate a standard home. This is because most homes are not built with accessibility in mind.
There are many things that you can do to make your home more accessible for those who are disabled. Here are some of the best changes that you can make.
Use lever handles and grab bars
Door knobs can be difficult to grip and turn for those who have limited hand movement. Lever handles are much easier to use and can make a big difference in the daily life of a disabled person. Imagine not being able to enter your own home because you can’t turn the doorknob. Lever handles are a simple and effective way to solve this problem.
You can also find lever handles for faucets. This will make it easier for those who have difficulty turning a standard knob when washing their hands or brushing their teeth.
Additionally, grab bars are a great way to make your home more accessible for those who have difficulty balancing or mobility. They can be installed in the shower, next to the toilet, or in other areas of the home where someone may need extra support.
These are extra helpful for those who are disabled, as they can provide the stability needed to prevent falls.
Upgrading the stairs
For those who have difficulty walking, stairs can be a big challenge, so if your home has stairs, consider upgrading them to make them more accessible. Adding a handrail can also be helpful for those who have difficulty balancing. If your home has more than one level, consider adding a stair lift or an elevator. This will make it much easier for someone who uses a wheelchair or has difficulty walking to get around their own home.
Additionally, stairs can be made more visible by adding striping to the edges or painting them a different color from the rest of the floor. This will help those with vision impairments to better see the stairs and avoid any potential accidents.
On the other hand, for those who use wheelchairs or have limited mobility, you can consider moving their things to the ground floor, if they cannot use these mobility aids to access other floors in the home.
Change doorways and hallways
Many homes have doorways and hallways that are too narrow for wheelchair users or those with walkers or scooters. If this is the case in your home, you can widen these areas to make them more accessible. This may require some construction work, but it will make a big difference in the daily life of someone who uses a wheelchair or other mobility aid.
For instance, you can remove the trim around the doorways and hallways to make them wider. You can also replace doors with ones that are easier to open or have automatic doors installed.
However, if you cannot change doorways and hallways, make sure there is enough space for someone in a wheelchair to turn around. Additionally, put up signs or paint the walls to make them more visible for those who have vision impairments.
Install accessible light switches and outlets
For those who have difficulty reaching, bending, or gripping, standard light switches and outlets can be a challenge. Consider installing accessible light switches and outlets that can be easily reached and operated.
There are many different types of accessible light switches and outlets on the market. Some are designed to be operated on with an elbow or forearm, while others can be operated on with a foot. Some switches and outlets can be operated with a disability card or key.
Since poor lighting can be a safety hazard for everyone, but it is especially dangerous for those who have vision impairments. It is important to make sure that all rooms in your home are well-lit so that everyone can see clearly.
Make your home more slip-resistant
Slips and falls are leading causes of injuries, especially for the elderly. To make your home more slip-resistant, start by ensuring that all flooring is in good condition and free of any tripping hazards. For instance, repair any loose or raised floorboards, and secure any loose rugs or carpets.
You can also make your floors more slip-resistant by adding nonslip mats or strips, especially in areas where there is a lot of traffic or water, such as the bathroom, kitchen, or laundry room.
Additionally, it is important to keep your floors clean and dry. Make sure to wipe up any spills immediately, and mop or vacuum regularly. Remove any obstacles that could cause someone to trip, such as electrical cords or loose rugs.
Install a ramp
If your home has steps leading up to the front door, this can be a big obstacle for those who use wheelchairs or have difficulty walking. To make your home more accessible, you can install a ramp. This will provide a safe and easy way for those with mobility impairments to enter and exit your home.
There are many different types of ramps available on the market, so you can find one that best suits your needs. Some ramps are portable, while others are permanently installed. Some ramps can be folded up when not in use.
Additionally, ramps are great because they can help to go in and out of the car for those who have difficulty walking or use mobility aids.
Making your home more accessible for those who are disabled can be a great way to make your life easier. Making the changes listed above can help to improve the daily lives of those who use wheelchairs or other mobility aids. If you are unable to make all of these changes, start by making one change that will have the biggest impact on improving accessibility in your home.
Depending on a disability, this may be installing a ramp, widening doorways, or adding non-slip mats to your floors. However, all of these changes can help to make your home more accessible and safer for everyone.