THE FOLLOWING IS FROM A BOOK OFFERED BY 'AARP' (AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF RETIRED PERSONS) - "THE DO-ABLE RENEWABLE HOME". IF YOU WANT TO MAKE ANY OF THE CHANGES FOR SOMEONE, I WANT TO SUGGEST THAT YOU CONTACT YOUR LOCAL BUILDING INSPECTOR OR A GOOD CONTRACTOR TO MAKE SURE YOU ARE FOLLOWING THE BUILDING CODES. WE HAD A CONTRACTOR DO THE CHANGES FOR MY MOTHER AT HER PLACE SO WE COULD BE AT PEACE WHEN WE DECIDE TO SELL IT, ALL WOULD BE FINE. I AM STARTING FROM WHERE I LEFT OFF IN THE SAME TITLED POST - PART 1. AGAIN -- I WILL NOT GIVE DIMENSIONS, JUST IN CASE MEASUREMENTS CHANGE WITH CODES. (pictures from searches on MSN.com)
If you have an elderly parent or someone using a walker or a wheelchair, you may need to adjust the door frame size. The book states you should have easy access through at least 1 entry door, though preferably 2 for fire exits, and all doors along the accessible routes between kitchen, bedrooms, dining room, bathroom and any other rooms that are used on a daily basis.
Four main reasons people have a problem using doors:
*width -- too narrow for wheelchair and/or walker;
*landing -- floor space on either side of the door is too small for someone using a wheelchair or walker to be on & open the door;
*hardware -- a latch or lock is too hard to reach and operate, or hard to operate based on the limited dexterity of person's fingers;
*weight -- door or door closer/spring too strong to easily open.
**When it comes to the width of a door frame - you can of course open the width of the frame/cut out a whole new frame. There are 'swing clear hinges' which will enlarge the opening by 1 1/2" to 1 3/4". You can remove the 'door stops' (creates a stop for swinging doors) and then re-install them about 3" above the floor. This adds about 3/4" to the opening. Remove the entire door by taking out the pins from the hinges. If you think you will not re-install another door, you can then fill the holes putty or spackle and repaint/refinish.
**With landings, you may have to relocate walls or partitions, or just remove the door, or install an electronic door opener.
**Hardware: choices are latches, locks, thresholds, kickplates, vision panels, automatic door openers.
Use a latch that requires no fine gripping or strong twisting like a lever arm.
Locks: to see whether your locks can be used by an elderly parent, you can of course ask them to try or, if your the person is arthritic, you can use your closed fist to see if you can open it. Best replacement might be a level style lock,either changing the one you have or adding on an extension to the knob. Magnetic cards might work or remote control locks. Thresholds can be a hazard if there is about 1/2" change in height; so either remove them or make a ramp. Kickplates can reduce wear & tear on a door and should be thin so will not reduce the opening. A vision panel (glass panel in a door) can be used on a door that normally might stay closed. The glass panel will allow people to see on the other side if anyone is coming & reduce the possibility of someone getting knocked over by the door opening. If you want some type of automatic door opener, you can do your own by using a system of weights & pulleys or install one that uses a remote button and sensor.
There is more to come. Hope this starts people looking around at their parent's home and thinking.
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4 Signs of Caregiving Stress Overload
ElderCarelink email posts 4 signs that should not be overlooked by you, the caregiver, or a close family member or friend. They report that even though the immediate caregiver may not be helping in direct care, the mind is never far from the needs of the older person, thinking about meals, falling, medications. Take the opinion of a family member or friend if they are telling you that you are stressed. Four signs: you skip your own physicals; you isolate yourself from others; you eat and/or drink too much for good health; you are short tempered with the elder, your spouse or your children. If any or all of these sound familiar, take a break no matter how short in order to recharge. For more information on caregiver stress see ElderCarelink
You can check out my ranting and stream of consciousness writing about looking at adult service providers with Will.
A Caregiver's Poem
I was looking through a 'Caregiver's Blog: Senior Care Support' and came across a poem that was shared by a writer, Dana, from the blog. The poem was written by Becky Netherland and Dana's grandmother shared it with her. I thought it was great and there is not much to say about it - just read!!! Enjoy!!
(picture from Caregivers Blog)
I’ve traveled paths you’ve yet to walk
Learned lessons old and new
And now this wisdom of my life
I’m blessed to share with you
Let kindness spread like sunshine
Embrace those who are sad
Respect their dignity, give them joy
And leave them feeling glad
Forgive those who might hurt you
And though you have your pride
Listen closely to their viewpoint
Try to see the other side
Walk softly when you’re angry
Try not to take offense
Invoke your sense of humor
Laughter’s power is immense!
Express what you are feeling
Your beliefs you should uphold
Don’t shy away from what is right
Be courageous and be bold
Keep hope right in your pocket
It will guide you day by day
Take it out when it is needed
When it’s near, you’ll find a way
Remember friends and family
Of which you are a precious part
Love deeply and love truly
Give freely from your heart
The world is far from perfect
There’s conflict and there’s strife
But you still can make a difference
By how you live your life
And so I’m very blessed to know
The wonders you will do
Because you are my granddaughter
And I believe in you.
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