While we as Americans and world citizens are currently (mostly) homebound ourselves due to government restrictions put in place during the COVID-19 Pandemic, many of our seniors have been homebound for a lot longer.
Do you have an elderly family member who lives alone?
Have you given their continued safety enough consideration?
In this article, we will give you the best home security tips for homebound seniors! Please share with those you love.
Who is Considered a Homebound Senior?
The definition of a homebound senior:
being homebound or housebound means an individual is unable to leave their home without difficulty, and due to this difficulty, generally does not leave their home. It is usually due to advanced age, illness, or a disability.
Often, seniors deal not only with their advanced age, but they also have illnesses or disabilities that would prevent them from leaving their homes.
How To Keep a Homebound Senior Safe
The best way to keep a homebound senior safe is to create a safety care plan with all parties involved.
Who needs to be included in this security and safety plan?
- the senior(s)
- adult children
- primary physician
- home healthcare workers
- home care workers
While this plan most often focusses on physical health; making sure meds are taken, doctor appointments are kept and food is delivered, cooked and eaten, there has to be ONE central command center, so to speak.
Once a plan has been formulated, it’s time to put it into action.
Tracking Progress and Safety
While the senior in your life might or might not have access and the ability to use technology, the care team certainly does.
We found several great apps to check out to coordinate efforts to keep the senior healthy and safe.
We liked these two:
Alzheimer’s Caregiver Buddy
The Alzheimer’s Association, a leader in action and awareness around the disease, developed this “caregiver buddy” app to help caregivers manage their personal stress, navigate family conflict and reach a 24/7 helpline.
The app includes features like daily care tips for tasks related to hygiene and meal times, and fun activities that will stimulate the body and mind of someone living with dementia. It also covers how to cope with new and sometimes overwhelming behaviors, like aggression or hallucination.
Communication is critical when dividing caregiving duties among multiple people — and that’s where CaringBridge can help. CaringBridge connects several caregivers through one app, allowing several people to keep track of appointments, changes in health and other essential information.
Users can also send each other inspiring messages and motivation through the app, which really helps pull together a team of caregivers in the toughest moments.
Home Security Tips for Seniors
If the senior in your life lives at home, here are the best home security tips we’ve found to protect your senior. If the senior lives with you and your family, we recommend you read this.
Immediate Access to Emergency
This is the number one concern so set up your senior with a panic button so that help is on the way quickly. It could save their life!
If the senior in your life is still doing some home cooking, it might be time to install some additional safety measures.
Start with this checklist of prevention tips, and move onto these types of devices, if needed!
Then invest in an automatic stove turn-off device before the first fire even starts.
Security Cameras and Smart Technology
If you can’t be with them all the time, the closest, or second-best option is to install security cameras in your senior’s home. Both Alarm.com and Honeywell Total Connect offer apps with smarthome technology to keep an eye on your senior. While this is something the senior has to agree to, it might give all of the family peace of mind!
Install and Teach Your Senior To Use The Peephole
This goes without saying, and seniors might need to hear this more than once; not everyone who comes to their door is up to good. Remind your senior to not open the door to strangers.
Keep Windows and Doors Locked When at Home!
While fresh air is great, open doors and windows could potentially invite unwanted visitors. We don’t recommend scaring your senior, but common sense should prevail. When living alone, they need to be aware of doors and windows and not leave them opened and unattended for long periods of time!
Alert the Senior of Phone Scams Targeting Seniors
Keep this dialogue going! Local police will often warn of local scams, and putting a note near your senior’s phone might be a good start! The note should remind them to NEVER give out their Social Security number, a credit card number, or send money. When in doubt, they need to know it’s OK to disconnect the call!
How Can We Help?
We at Strand Security understand you might not live near your senior. If we can help you keep you in any way as you navigate keeping your loved one safe from a distance, do not hesitate to reach out!