To determine if an older adult can continue living at home, take a good look at all aspects of their present housing situation and how each one affects their safety and quality of life.
- Do they remember to take their medications at prescribed doses and times?
- Have they had any hospitalizations or health issues due to skipped doses or multiple doses?
- Can you locate expired medications or pill bottles spread across different rooms with no apparent structure or routine?
- Can they cook for themselves?
- Are they eating balanced meals?
- Are they able to safely operate kitchen appliances?
- Have there been incidents where they’ve forgotten a meal in the oven, accidentally left the stove on, or started a fire?
Safety and Mobility
- Do they have difficulty getting around the home or taking stairs?
- Have they fallen in the home?
- Do they have a plan in place to summon help in case of an emergency?
- Is the home equipped with safety devices like grab bars, an emergency response system, and other tools to ensure safety?
- Can they bathe themselves, groom themselves adequately and manage their laundry?
- Are they bathing frequently enough?
- Do you notice an unkempt appearance, body odor, and soiled clothing indicating they’re unable or unwilling to care for themselves properly?
- Are they still driving?
- Are they driving safe, been in recent car accidents, or gotten lost in familiar areas?
- Do they have alternate means of transportation for doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping, and other errands?
- Are they paying their bills on time?
- Are there stacks of unopened mail, unpaid bills, or late payment notices lying around?
- Are there signs that they’ve been overspending?
- Do they get calls from telemarketers or creditors?
Download the Activities of Daily Living checklist to help you further with your assessment.
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