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tips for caregivers: Housekeeping

If you are providing care for an older loved one who lives in their own home, chances are good that they want to stay there for as long as possible. Home upkeep may become a challenge, especially if your loved one has mobility issues. Here are some techniques and products that can help your loved one overcome these challenges to maintain their home—and their independence.

  1. Help your loved one organize their household cleaning needs, placing commonly used items in easy-to-reach places to avoid bending low or overreaching. Encourage them to space chores out over the course of the week so they don't overexert themselves.

  2. If your loved one lives in a two-story home, make sure there is a separate vacuum cleaner for each story. Besides the strain and potential over-exertion from carrying a heavy vacuum up and down stairs, it also presents a falls risk.

  3. There are a wide variety of cleaning tools on the market specifically designed for people with physical disabilities or mobility issues. Tools with wide-grip handles may be easier for your loved one to grasp, especially if they have arthritis in their hands. Long-handled or telescoping scrub brushes and dusters will help your loved one avoid stooping, bending and climbing to reach areas in need of cleaning. Bucket-less mops make cleaning tiles and hardwood floors easier. Some foot stools come with a safety handle to help your loved one maintain their balance. Folding carts with wheels make it easier to transport cleaning products and other items from room to room.

  4. Some home care and other agencies offer assistance with light housekeeping if your loved one needs a bit of additional help.

    A version of this article appeared in the Private Health News.

Looking for help caring for your loved one? call intake at 216.791.8000 or email intake@benrose.org.