What To Do If Your Elderly Parent Is Moving In With You
Is your elderly parent moving in with you? If you're furnishing a room for them, you'll want to pick bedroom furniture and accessories that accommodates their needs and style. Here are some suggestions to make their room comfortable:
Bed and mattress: Let them decide how soft or hard they want the bed to be. If space is limited, consider buying a twin bed. If your parent has health issues such as apnea or acid reflux, a mattress wedge will allow you to raise the head of the bed higher, enabling them to sleep at an angle. You may also want to consider purchasing an adjustable bed, so that your parent can change the angle from time to time.
Bed height: If your parent has joint issues, getting out of a low bed could be difficult for them. You can raise the entire bed by putting a brick under each leg. Get a helper to place the bricks, so as to make sure the bed leg is safely in the middle of each brick.
Bedding and linens: Your parent may not want to tell you more information about their intermittent incontinence. If this could be a problem, you can deal with the issue tactfully, by putting a waterproof mattress pad on the bed before they arrive. Buy plenty of extra sheets so their bed is always usable, even between laundry days.
Dresser: If the drawers of a conventional dresser are too heavy for your parent, buy a child-sized dresser. Select one that has "brakes" to prevent the drawers from accidentally being pulled all the way out. If the knobs don't suit your parent's taste, ask the furniture store to replace them for something more adult.
Seating: Your parent will probably view their room as a "mini-apartment", so try to include several types of seating for them. If there's room, put a recliner in their room for short naps. An armed desk chair can also be used whilst dressing. Measure your parent to select the right size of chair. Chairs that are too close to the ground can be difficult for someone who has issues moving from a seated position.
Desk and shelves: Your parent will probably want someplace where they can sit and write letters, or make out cards. Include shelves for their books, but make sure the shelves are not out of reach for your parent.
Lighting: Offer your parent plenty of lighting. In addition to the overhead lighting, include a bedside lamp on a nightstand, or a floor lamp near their recliner for reading. Place the lamps so their cords are not a trip hazard.
Allowing your parent to move in can be an interesting change in everyone's living situation. Get this phase of your parent's life off to a good start by giving them bedroom furniture that suits their tastes and is comfortable for them to use.