Finding Independence in Older Adulthood

February is National Senior Independence Month! Older adulthood is often associated with loss of independence, but with a few preparatory tips, it doesn’t have to. The key to maintaining your independence is to show your family and those who may be worried about you that you are safe.

Embrace Technology

Embracing technology is a great way to maintain your independence well into older adulthood. This doesn’t mean you have to be attached to your smartphone or tablet. Knowing how to use these devices means that you will easily be able to stay in contact with your family and you can contact them in case of emergencies. There are tons of tools to help you learn how to use these devices.

There are apps that are specifically designed for seniors, including entertainment and informational apps, as well as practical apps that provide medication reminders or monitor blood pressure. Find a list of apps for seniors here.

Safeguard your Home

Take a look at your home and evaluate how safe it may or may not be. Are the railings on the staircases loose? Are there grab bars in the shower? Is the hallway well-lit? Do you have smoke detectors and fire extinguishers? Make a list of all the safety improvements that you have been putting off. Prioritize your safety so that you can stay at home longer. This list is a great place to start. You may also want to do some deep-cleaning. Get rid of any clutter that may limit your mobility.

Enlist Help

There’s nothing wrong with needing a little help. If your laundry room is downstairs and it’s too difficult to carry the clothes up and down the stairs, you may elect to have someone visit your home once or twice per week to assist. Perhaps you struggle to reach certain cupboards when cleaning and you don’t feel comfortable balancing on a step ladder. Enlisting a little help doesn’t mean that you aren’t independent.

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