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Handicap Accessible Establishments for Senior Safety

How to check to see if establishments are handicap accessible and senior-friendly… and what to do if they aren’t.

A senior-friendly environment is very important to your loved one’s continuing independence, health and happiness. Think about everywhere you go on a given day, whether it’s the store, the movie theater, a restaurant or a park. Any one of these places may have barriers that prevent the handicapped or elderly from enjoying things that able-bodied people take for granted. Here are the main things you or a Bridgewater senior caregiver need to look for as you go about a normal day to make sure that aging adults are able to enjoy themselves.

Ramps and Railings

For the handicapped, just one step or uneven curb is a barrier to entry. Also, a flight of steps can be exhausting and dangerous. Without a railing, falls become an issue, and fall-related injuries are one of the number one reasons seniors lose their independence. All businesses are required by law to provide handicapped access, so if you don’t see ramps and railings, report it or avoid that establishment.

Clean, Orderly Surroundings

Look around when you visit a new place. Odors and visible dirt mean germs and viruses may be present. The elderly and disabled may have compromised immune systems and need extra protection. Look for hand sanitizer dispensers, adequate lighting, clean surfaces, walls and flooring, as well as furniture arrangements that don’t present obstacles to those with limited mobility.

Senior Discounts

Check with the establishment’s management to learn about possible senior discounts. Most businesses and organizations realize that many seniors live on fixed incomes but are still a vibrant part of the economy and will offer discounts for those over 55 or 60.

All of these factors are easy to observe and correct if you know where to look and who to talk to. Don’t hesitate to speak up if you don’t like what you see! And when in doubt, always bring along an hourly caregiver in Bridgewater from Home Care Assistance who is able to look out for the well-being of your senior loved one.

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