Sometimes growing your family doesn’t mean bringing home a new child but instead welcoming your parents into your home. The world’s population of people aged 60 and older is expected to climb to 22% by 2050, and 70% of people turning 65 in the U.S. will need some type of long-term care during their life. In fact, 29% of seniors who need nursing care live with their family caregiver.
The good news is that making room for your parents doesn’t need to be a challenge. Here are four ways you can make your home comfortable for your aging parents while keeping the rest of your family comfortable, too.
Give everyone their own space
It can be tricky to make sure everyone has their privacy when your parents move in with you. But if you’re careful about how you move things around, you can work things out so everyone’s happy.
Privacy isn’t necessarily about being completely separate from the rest of the family. By setting up curtains on a track from the ceiling or lining up a bookcase just right, you can divide spaces in your home to create private areas.
If you have more room in your budget, you can also consider renovating your basement or building an in-law suite in your backyard. In-law suites are especially great if there’s some time between now and when your parents move in because you can rent out the space to make a return on your investment.
Make sure everyone is keeping the house clean
It’s true that it’s important to keep your house clean because it can easily get messy when you have more people living with you. But it’s especially important to keep your house clean because certain household items can affect your parents’ health.
For instance, two-thirds of all homes in the U.S. have air conditioners, and in the southern U.S., 67% of central air conditioning is used all summer long.. It’s recommended to replace your air filters approximately once a month, or twice a month if you have pets. Unfiltered air can cause respiratory infections and other issues not only in people with weaker immune systems but also in those with good health.
That said, be sure making household appliance maintenance a part of your family’s chore list and that everyone is doing their part around the house.
Consider drinking water during family meals
When it comes to making sure everyone is comfortable when your parents are living with you, staying hydrated may sound like an odd tip. But chronic dehydration affects up to 75% of North Americans, and seniors are especially at risk.
Dehydration can affect your family’s health, memory, and mood. By having everyone drink water during family meals, you can increase your water intake together to make sure you’re hydrating.
Make sure your rugs have grips and your furniture is secure
Even if you think a piece of furniture is stable enough on its own, it’s a good idea to have your furniture secured to the wall. Everyone loses their balance sometimes, but seniors are at greater risk for falls and you never know when your kids’ curiosity may get the better of them.
Add grips rug grips to the bottom of your rugs around the house, too, to reduce the risk of slips and trips.
It can be challenging to have your parents move in with you as an adult. But by following the tips above, you can help to ensure everyone stays safe and comfortable at home.
If someone in the family needs accommodations to make things work, bring in a professional to install a stairlift to allow everyone free reign of the house.