Safety is one of the key issues that seniors and their caregivers face. Taking precautions in the kitchen can go a long way towards ensuring safety for the elderly and peace of mind for everyone around them.
If an elderly loved one has cognitive or physical difficulties that make it unsafe to operate the stove, prevent problems by removing the knobs from the stove when no one is around to supervise the person. For a gas stove, install a shut off valve that you can turn off when the stove should not be used. Move any cords from appliances away from the stove top to prevent fires. It's also a good idea to move any flammable liquids out of the kitchen if the elderly person might become confused and use the liquid near the stove.
For elderly people who are able to cook, remind them to avoid loose, long sleeves while cooking, as they could catch fire from stove tops. Remove hand towels hanging near the stove that could also be a fire hazard. Install smoke alarms and fire extinguishers in the kitchen in case a fire does occur.
Other Kitchen Safety
For elderly people who have cognitive deterioration, make sure that knives are secured in a drawer that has safety latches to prevent anyone getting in who should not be handling knives. Remove throw rugs from the kitchen to prevent elderly people from tripping or sliding on them.
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