Today, more and more older Australians wish to remain at home where they feel comfortable to live the life they want. Through the right care and support they can.
Feros Care, a provider of community at home support and telecare technology, shares some tips on how you can make the most of staying in your own home, for longer.
Healthy Inside and Out
Good nutrition is key in maintaining good health as you get older. You should ensure you are consuming regular serves of fruit and vegetables, dairy, legumes (e.g. beans or lentils) and grains (e.g. brown rice and oatmeal). Also, as you get older you lose your ability to feel thirsty, so keep track of how many glasses of water you’ve had and aim for 6-8 glasses a day.
Another key to remaining happy at home is being mentally and socially stimulated, including managing stress. There are many ways you can do this including hobbies, sleeping well, social outings, or using the internet to communicate with loved ones.
The well-known saying ‘move it or lose it’ applies when it comes to bodies of all ages. Aim for thirty minutes of physical activity a day.
A great way to exercise is through incidental activities such as walking to the mailbox or up the street to run errands. Also, don’t let well-meaning visitors do tasks for you at home otherwise habits may form.
If you’re unsure about what exercises are right for you, speak to your GP or a fitness specialist.
You need to pay particular attention to rooms and hallways which could have hidden dangers. A few adjustments will make the home environment safer including:
- keeping high traffic areas clear of clutter or cords
- making sure furniture is positioned to provide clear walking space
- removing throw rugs that can be a trip hazard
- storing heavy items at waist height so they’re easy to access
- using non-slip mats inside and out of baths/showers
- installing handrails where extra assistance is needed e.g. bathrooms or stairwells
- ensuring all lights and fire/smoke detectors are working properly.
Tailor Made Support
Older Australians are eligible to apply for government-funded support in the home (conditions apply and funding allowances differ per individual or couple) including:
Domestic Care – meals, home maintenance, paying bills, transport, gardening, moving or pet care.
Personal Care – hygiene and grooming, continence management, dietary planning, respite, mobility assistance, communication aides, medication assistance and support at medical appointments.
Wellness & Lifestyle – counselling and chaplaincy, exercise support, complementary therapies, social connections and activities, and falls prevention programs.
Nursing Care – management of wounds, pain, oxygen and medication, as well as clinical observations, catheter care, post-hospital care, multi-disciplinary clinical support, dementia support and palliative care.
Smart Home Technology
Easy to use technology is now available in Australia to turn ordinary homes into life saving, Smart Homes. Operating out of a central base alarm and communicating to a 24/7 support centre, various alarms and sensors can be set-up to enhance the safety of any home, or in the worst case, ensure family, friends, neighbours or emergency services can be sent quickly. The nifty gadgets can include:
- automatic night lighting
- movement/inactivity sensors
- falls detectors
- voice reminders (for medication or care visits)
- personal alarms (on pendant, wrist or belt)
- emergency pull cords and help buttons
- unwelcome caller/visitor buttons
- property exit sensors
- smoke, gas and flood detectors
Feros Care’s LifeLink service is just one technology provider available in Australia.
Feros Care has an experienced Aged Care Advisory Team which will provide free and friendly assistance to seniors and carers. Call 1300 763 583 regarding your aged and community care questions.