16 products to help keep seniors safe and independent at home

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Maintaining independence and the ability to live in their own home is important to most seniors. After all, it's the place where they've made many happy memories and there really is no place like home. Having said that, age catches up with us all eventually, and homes can be dangerous places. Unfortunately, this means that some necessary lifestyle changes are inevitable.

The good news is that with the right adjustments, maintaining safety and independence becomes a whole lot easier. So we've put together a list of some of the most useful products to help out with this.

Personal safety devices for seniors

Smartwatches

When you hear the term smartwatch, your brain probably associates these products with quickly getting your notifications or answering calls without having to pull out your phone. While this is certainly a common use, depending on the watch, there are also specific features built-in for monitoring things such as location and vital signs.

Some devices, like the Apple Watch, also commonly have SOS functions and fall detection, making them great all-rounders for safety. Plus, they keep a record of things such as blood pressure and heart rate, making them valuable medical assistants as well.

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SOS devices

Dedicated SOS devices (like the NutTAG Seek) can be either worn or kept around the house. Either way, these simple products are designed to help seniors alert either emergency services or trusted contacts in the event of a fall or other issue and can quite literally be life savers.

We do suggest making use of the wearable variety as then they're always available, but if this isn't desirable you can also place them around the home in areas that would be easily accessible.

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Personal trackers

If you're worried about unplanned trips or not being able to find your senior loved one, a personal tracker (like an AirTag) is an excellent resource. These products are able to be attached to clothing, keys or anything else that they're likely to take with them when leaving the house.

Personal trackers may feel a little invasive, but as long as the individual knows they're being tracked (and gives their consent),  you're not compromising their privacy, but you are greatly improving their safety.

Note: Many smartwatches for seniors also include this functionality.

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Apple AirTag
AirTag
$46.95

Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Glasses and hearing aids

Nobody likes admitting that they need glasses or hearing aids, but it's a simple fact that sometimes our bodies let us down as we age.

These days there are plenty of options available that are both subtle and stylish, so be sure to take your elderly loved one for eye and ear tests as recommended by their doctor.

Walkers

Walkers are another invaluable resource for seniors, especially if they're starting to experience a reduction in mobility or balance.

Not only will a walker help your loved one get around, but they're also great for when they need to carry the shopping or want to take a four-legged friend places with them.

General home adjustments for senior safety

Fall prevention handles

Sometimes we could all do with a bit of a helping hand, but if your senior loved one doesn't want an in-home carer, they're probably going to need some fall prevention handles installed.

Also commonly referred to as grab rails, these products do exactly what the name would suggest. The idea behind them is that they're easily grabbable to prevent a fall (or make use of to help get back up in the event of a fall) and we recommend that they be placed in all areas where falls are likely to happen.

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Shower seats and/or mats

If standing is sometimes a bit hard for your senior loved one, it's probably a good idea to get them a shower seat. Slips are most likely to happen in wet areas, so anything that can be done to reduce the risk is highly recommended.

Installing shower and bath anti-slip mats can also be quite helpful. This type of product is specially designed to provide extra grip without taking up any extra space, so if your loved one has a rather small shower, they're a good alternative to chairs.

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Detachable shower heads

These days most showers have either a detachable head as standard or an additional one that can be used if desired. If your loved one has an older style bathroom, however, they may not have this option.

Detachable heads can make showering far easier, especially if your loved one needs to make use of a chair, and they're an entirely inconspicuous addition. This makes them particularly great for seniors who don't want to admit they need a little extra help.

Jar and can openers

These days most showers have either a detachable head as standard or an additional one that can be used if desired. If your loved one has an older style bathroom, however, they may not have this option.

Detachable heads can make showering far easier, especially if your loved one needs to make use of a chair, and they're an entirely inconspicuous addition. This makes them particularly great for seniors who don't want to admit they need a little extra help.

Stair lifts

Stairs pose a risk both for mobility and falls. To help minimise this risk, the installation of a stair lift is recommended. Not only will it make life easier, but it'll also make it a whole lot safer.

Medication organiser

Keeping track of when you're supposed to take various medications is a hassle at the best of times, and if brain fog is setting in, it can be near impossible.

A medication organiser is a quick, easy and inexpensive way to ensure that your senior loved one is taking what they need when they need it, so you can help prevent issues from arising or worsening.

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Smart home technology to help seniors maintain independence

Sensor lights

As we age and our eyesight fades, it's naturally harder to see in the dark. Sensor lights can greatly reduce risk during nighttime hours and are a low-cost, high-benefit addition to any home.

We like the Eufy Lumi, which comes as a three-pack of AAA-battery-powered (not included, unfortunately) night lights with adhesive strips for easy installation.

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Eufy Lumi Night Lights
$29.95
(3-pack)

Price is accurate as of post date. Read full disclaimer.

Robot vacuums

Vacuuming can be a surprisingly hard and dangerous chore, especially if your loved one has any back issues. For this reason, robot vacuums are a worthwhile addition to the home both for safety and hygiene reasons.

For added convenience, we recommend getting something like the Ecovac Deebot N8+, which empties itself after each clean into a bin that only requires emptying every 60 days. It's also a mop, which can come in super handy.

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Voice assistants

Having a smart speaker with a voice assistant within the home is the smart technology version of being able to call out for help. In other words, they're invaluable.

Home security systems

Seniors often aren't able to protect themselves as well as they once were, so it's important to take steps to prevent danger from entering the house.

For this reason, we suggest the installation of a home security system. When programmed to alert them whenever someone comes onto their property, these systems can give them a couple of extra minutes' warning. This allows them to get to a safe space and call the police, meaning they'll be far better protected.

Smart locks

Smart locks are helpful both for seniors who are prone to losing their keys, and those who may need to grant access to trusted contacts.

Biometric models are a great option for those who have trouble remembering codes, and smart locks with integrated cameras also provide extra security.

Final word

Maintaining independence is great for both quality of life and longevity, so it is a worthy goal.

The products in this article have been selected to offer assistance, but we always recommend speaking with your loved one's medical practitioner to create a personally tailored plan to help them age in place.

Jessica Jones
Written by
Jess has been writing educational content for almost ten years with a focus on lifestyle content. She loves coffee, dogs and all things fitness, and can often be found with her nose buried in a book and her music blaring through her earphones.

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