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Interactive Home Safety Guide

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What are the most unsafe areas of the home for seniors? Bathrooms and bedrooms lead the way, according to a survey of ER doctors in the U.S. and Canada conducted by Home Instead, Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead® network. Physicians say that injuries are most likely to happen in these areas of the home:

  • Bathroom – 69% (56% in Canada)
  • Bedroom – 13% (14% in Canada)
  • Kitchen – 9% (12% in Canada)
  • Stairs – 5%

An overwhelming majority of ER doctors (100% in the U.S. and 99% in Canada), adult children (85% in the U.S. and 84% in Canada), and seniors (94% in the U.S. and 97% in Canada) agree that falls are the most common home accidents for older adults.

So what can older adults who want to stay at home do? ER doctors in the U.S. and Canada are unanimous. One hundred percent agree that an annual home safety check is very important to a senior’s home safety. A room-by-room check can make all the difference in keeping seniors safe and independent at home.

So, too, can having additional help around the house. An estimated 97% (99% in Canada) of ER doctors report that not having help at home with activities of daily living is a very serious risk factor for accidents or injuries at home.


This home safety check is being provided solely for the purpose of raising the recipient’s awareness of any potential home safety issues. It is not intended to address every potential home safety issue present in the recipient’s home before, during or after this home safety check’s administration. Neither the findings of, nor any of the suggestions from, this home safety check are intended to be construed as, and should not be construed as being, health care or safety related advice or instruction. Recipients of this home safety check should always consult with their medical or other health care professionals for any medical diagnosis and treatment, as well as a qualified home inspector or home repair contractor for any recommended and necessary home repairs and safety updates.

Home Instead, Inc. and the members of the Home Instead® franchise and master franchise network expressly disclaim any liability with respect to the findings or suggestions of any home safety check, the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided or omitted from any home safety check’s findings or suggestions, and any accidents, property damages and injuries that occur in the home before, while or after the home safety check is conducted.

Last revised: April 21, 2014

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Thoughts and stories from others
  1. May 15, 2016 at 9:52 pm | Posted by Charles KolbMy wife and myself are elderly

    My wife and myself are both elderly and any suggestions or help in identifying potential dangers in our home would be appreciated.


    • May 16, 2016 at 1:44 pm | Posted by Home Instead

      Hi, Charles, Be sure to check out other resources in this section of the Caregiver Stress website (such as the Home Safety Checklist: The US Consumer Product Safety Commission has also produced a Home Safety Checklist, which you may find helpful: Best wishes from Home Instead.


  2. July 1, 2014 at 12:07 am | Posted by Anna Strong

    I hope stressing the need to have someone monitor and fill their medicines.. If possible, all seniors who take meds and vitamins need an advocate to make sure they are taking them as directed and that there are no duplicates. I bought my mother a pill dispenser that announces when it is time to take the meds and will continue until she pushes the button. Even with this device, there is still a need for someone to set up the meds for a week or monthly.


  3. June 20, 2014 at 10:32 am | Posted by F. Perry

    My husband recently complained of pain so I suggested that he should take two paracetamol tablets. Normally, I would have fetched them for him but, on that occasion I was very tired and the tablets were at face height in the cupboard as the door was opened. Unfortunately, he ignored the paracetamols, reached up to a high shelf and took two hearing aid batteries from the wallet where they have always been kept. 4 Hospital visits, X Rays and examinations later they were both passed. He did not once ask why all this was taking place and has no memory of what happened. (He trusts me.) Needless to say the batteries are now hidden from sight but I now realise that there is no place in our house which is really secure and that ever more vigilance is required. It is not easy. (I would not have dreamed that the batteries could be a danger.)


  4. June 16, 2014 at 10:04 pm | Posted by Linda Porter

    No throw rugs in the kitchen, especially in front of the stove. Lights are needed outside, approaching all exterior doors, that come on automatically. (motion sensors) Higher toilets are very helpful. Handrails by every set of stairs, even if there are only two steps and this should be outside and inside the house. No ladders in the house to tempt seniors to climb up to get something. Safety hand rails in the shower and tub areas. Any senior who lives alone should speak to someone every single day. Neighbors should be asked to look out for their older neighbors. My friend recently had to lay outside in her yard all night because she fell and couldn't get up. Her husband was in the hospital. Adult children should be diligent in checking on their parents and checking out the house for dangers, including checking on how they are doing with their medicines.


  5. April 29, 2014 at 8:43 am | Posted by Willa rivett

    Thanks every little bit helps..


  6. April 28, 2014 at 1:25 pm | Posted by Alan and Aurora Stephens

    Interested to receive any information regarding safety features in the home. We are seniors and intend to stay in our home. This is most important to us. Thank you for bringing your news feature to our attention!


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