January 08, 2020
The kitchen is a space for creating your favorite dishes, but it can also be a dangerous place. Our Omaha senior care professionals want you to know that it can be a treacherous room for anyone, especially seniors.
The kitchen dangers for seniors
As you start to age, it can become easy to forget things like when food expires or something cooking on the stove. Ignoring these things can make your senior loved one at risk of starting a fire or getting them sick.
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, 51.6 percent of residential fires are from cooking. If your aging parent or a family member who lives alone forgets things, it can put them at risk of starting kitchen fires.
Another danger that seniors could face in kitchens is a foodborne illness. Elders have a weaker immune system. If they are not cooking food correctly or not taking precautions, they could get sick. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevents has reported that there have been 76 million illnesses from foodborne diseases and 5,000 deaths each year.
When it comes to keeping your loved one safe, our Omaha senior care experts want to share these kitchen safety tips for seniors.
Never leave cooking food unattended
As you start to age, it can become easy to forget certain things. A senior could be cooking food for themselves, then leave to check on something and forget what they left on the stove. Leaving food while cooking unattended can be dangerous and start a fire.
If your aging parent is living home alone, remind them to never leave their food unattended. Get them into the habit of staying with their food while it is cooking. It will reassure you that they will be safe.
Get different cutting boards
To reduce the risk of foodborne illness, use different cutting boards for meats and other foods. Raw meat may have bacteria. Sometimes that bacteria can start to grow on the board. So when you cut your vegetables or fruits with that same board, it can get tainted.
The best thing is to make sure your senior loved one has different cutting boards for their meats and vegetables. Choose different colors for meats, vegetables and fruits, this will make it easier for them to remember which they should use.
Check their smoke detectors
One of the best ways to prevent fires is to have smoke detectors in the kitchen. Make sure your aging parent or a family member has a detector. If they are renting a home, contact their landlord. Every month, be sure to test that their smoke detector is working. Every year replace the batteries.
Throw out expired food
Another important tip is to check your aging loved one’s fridge. Throw out any expired food that might be within their reach. Often the print on the food labels is too small for them to read. Or, they could forget when they made that purchase. By tossing this type of food out, you can reduce their chances of getting an illness.
Give your aging parent, family member or friend an extra helping hand in the kitchen with the best Omaha senior care. At Akkase Home Health Care, we offer in-home companionship and care services that include meal preparation. Contact us to set up your consultation.