Seniors who live alone are well known for being fiercely protective of their independence. While it is good that your loved one wants to continue doing things for themselves, it can also become a problem when they refuse to ask for help. There are many options that you can use to help your loved one age in place safely, and installing a stairlift is the perfect way to help them continue to live in their home without worries about falling. When you visit your loved one's home, keep an eye out for these signs that you may need to talk about making accommodations that help them get up and down the stairs.
They Sleep Downstairs
Many two-story homes have the majority of the bedrooms upstairs. Your loved one may decide to begin sleeping downstairs if they are afraid of falling down at night or have worries about not being able to make it upstairs when their legs are tired out after a long day. If your loved one claims to like sleeping on the couch or has moved to a downstairs bedroom, then use this as a chance to talk to them about their comfort using the stairs.
They Quit Cleaning Upstairs
You may also find that your loved one's home has a more disheveled upstairs area. This could mean that they are going up there less often. They may also be so tired from trying to make it upstairs that they don't have the energy left to clean. Keep an eye out for signs that your loved one also has trouble getting things that they need upstairs. For instance, your loved one may be unable to carry hygiene items upstairs at the same time as they are walking, and this could cause them to use the downstairs bathroom for bathing even if it is less comfortable.
They Won't Walk Upstairs in Front of You
You may also watch your loved one's behavior patterns while they are in the home. Have they always run upstairs to get things but now they make excuses to wait? Do they seem to only go upstairs when you are too busy to watch? If so, then your loved one may be afraid of you seeing them walk upstairs too slowly or with great effort. A straight stairlift makes it possible for them to simply glide upstairs so they won't have to worry about things such as trying to take a break mid-climb.
They Have Fallen Elsewhere
With seniors, it is better to be proactive than to deal with a major medical emergency. If your loved one falls on a small step outside or trips over a rug in their house, then you may need to consider the fact that a fall on the stairs is inevitable. Talk to your loved one about their ability to stave off injuries now by installing a stairlift in their home.