Parkinson’s disease, a motor system disorder, usually affects people over the age of 60. The condition develops as a result of the loss of dopamine-producing cells in the brain. Parkinson’s is characterized by trembling limbs and face, along with slowness of movement, impaired balance, and postural instability. Several other symptoms develop in advanced stages of the condition, such as difficulty swallowing, urinary problems, sleep disruptions, and constipation. Among the best treatment options for Parkinson’s, physicians prescribe medications and also insist on good quality home care from patient families. In this blog post, we list five tips to prep your home for a Parkinson’s patient. Take a look.
1. Get Rid of Possible Obstacles
First, you must get rid of all furniture and electronic devices with cords that might act as obstacles for the patient. All decor items such as side tables, stools, statues, and indoor plants must be placed in a manner that they don’t obstruct walking paths in the house . In addition, you must make sure that all essential furniture is secured, doesn’t swivel, and has comfortable armrests. Your home has to have ample lighting throughout the day, along with blinds to minimize glare.
2. Get a Bed with Adequate Height
Patients with Parkinson’s experience difficulty getting in and out of bed and make their way through stairs. Make sure that you install a bed that has a fairly low height, so that both the patient’s feet touch the ground when they are seated. Ideally, the height of the bed should be 22 inches, but you should also consider the height of the patient. In addition, position the bed along the wall, with rails attached to the sides of the bed, to help ease access to the bed. It is also advisable to locate the bedroom for Parkinson’s patients on the ground floor, so that they don’t have to cope with stairs.
3. Store Essentials in Easily Accessible Places
Parkinson’s affects patient motor abilities. Therefore, you must, set up storage spaces for essential elements such as medications and clothes, in places that are easily accessible for the patient. Make sure that you have open shelves or cabinets with handles, instead of knobs. Avoid cabinets and door fasteners that can make it more difficult for patients to access their contents. It is advisable to use plastic bowls instead of bone china or glass in the kitchen. In addition, use a single handle faucet for the sink so that the patient can easily operate it.
4. Install a Bedside Phone
You cannot rely on cellphones these days. They get discharged often, signals are not always available, and they can malfunction. You cannot have a lapse in the patient care because of a faulty cellphone. Make sure that you have a bedside phone in every room of your house that is easily accessible and has large buttons. You can also opt for a safety cord system or a personal touch pendant that send alerts to caregivers, in case of an emergency.
5. Tune Up the Bathroom
Bathrooms can often be a tricky utility for Parkinson’s patients. A bathroom with a wet floor, throw rugs, or bad lighting can increase the risk of the patient slipping and falling. Having ample lighting in the bathroom is therefore, essential. In addition, you must install various safety measures in the bathroom. The safety measures may include grab bars installed near the shower, bathtubs, and toilet, elevated toilet seats with arm rests, sturdy bench with back support in the shower, and a stable chair to aid doing tasks such as shaving and brushing their teeth.
Providing good home care for Parkinson’s patients is the best treatment. Patients often require round the clock care and support to assist them with their daily activities. This requirement is often difficult to cope with, given other life commitments. It is therefore, necessary to hire services of professional and compassionate caregivers to assist your loved ones suffering from Parkinson’s. Home Care Assistance of Dallas provides round-the-clock, professional, and affordable home care. To get more information about our Parkinson’s Care Services, fill out our contact form. You can also call us at (214) 363-3400.