Eva Korb is a writing specialist with a focus on aging in place.
For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or(847) 219-3316
Reminiscing on a pre-COVID world, concerns and uncertainty of our aging loved ones health and safety seemed less pressing. According to the Population Reference Bureau (https://www.prb.org/aging-unitedstates-fact-sheet/), as of 2017, life expectancy in the United States averaged 78.6 years. Not only were people living longer, but they could freely choose what healthcare plan was right for them and, depending where they lived, could freely come and go, hosting visitors as they pleased. In contrast, the pandemic has complicated this with our senior population being most at risk and thus isolated.
As times have changed, concern for our elderly loved ones is ever urgent, and giving them the opportunity to “Age in Place” has become more and more appealing. In the current climate, aging in place removes the hesitancy of moving seniors to an assisted living facility by creating a safe and secure living environment, as well as an individualized wellness plan in the comfort of their own home. Like assisted living, aging in place can provide personal care such as assistance with hygiene, meal planning and preparation, exercise and socialization. Assistance in this nature could be something as simple as grocery shopping or walking the dog to activities of daily living (ADL), such as eating, bathing, dressing, continence, and toileting.
In addition to in home caregiving and companionship assistance, another important aspect of aging in place is to make sure the home is safe. From simple security to safety products, home retrofitting is integral to assuring the safety of your loved ones. The installation of safety grab bars and poles may help stabilize seniors and reduce the risk of falls. Stairs and thresholds cause obstacles when using a cane, walker or wheelchair. Homes can be retrofitted with mobility lifts and ramps. There are even products for those visually or hearing impaired. These are just some of the adjustments that can mean the difference for a senior being able to live safely and securely in the comfort of their own home. Similar to a healthcare plan, these home safety strategies can be simple to implement to ensure seniors end of life independence in their home.
In essence, aging in place is made possible through a family meeting with in home caregiving providers and healthcare teams to evaluate your loved ones needs and develop a customized plan for the varying degrees of assistance in all capacities. Assessing assistance levels as a team allows for an individualized and complete care plan for your loved one. It is never too early to consider all of your options and needs. There are many in home caregiving agencies and age-in-place retrofitting services available. The research can begin with reaching out to your healthcare providers for advice.
Creating the proper age in place environment for your loved one is all encompassing and takes the pressure from concerns of assisted living facilities and personally taking on your loved one’s care. Done successfully, aging in place provides a life of longevity and fulfillment in the comfort of one’s own home.
 From “Fact Sheet: Aging in the United States,” by the Population Reference Bureau, 2019, Population Bulletin,
Fact Sheet: Aging in the United States – Population Reference Bureau (prb.org)
 From “Activities of Daily Living (ADL),” by Investopedia Staff and Reviewed by Roger Wohlner, 2020,
Investopedia, Activities of Daily Living (ADL) Definition (investopedia.com)