It seems odd that the furniture in your dad’s living room would become a fall risk, but it happens.
It’s not just that he might trip on an end table or hit his knee on a coffee table. Some chairs are more likely to slide away from him as he sits down. A reclining sofa may tip forward if part of it is in a reclined position when he tries to get up.
You don’t want him to fall while trying to stand up, sit down, or walk to another room. To make sure your dad’s furniture isn’t increasing his risk of falling, look for these seven features.
Make Sure the Chairs Have Non-Slip Feet
If your dad tries to sit down or stand up and a chair is slipping around, he’s more likely to fall. Look for chairs and sofas that have non-slip rubberized feet.
Test the Firmness of the Cushions
Firm cushions are easier to get up from. If the chair is plush and he sinks into it, it will be harder for him to get back up.
Get a Narrower Seat Depth
The depth of the seat cushions is also important. If the back of the sofa or chair is far from the front of the cushion, your dad’s feet may not reach the floor. He’ll have to scoot forward before he can safely stand.
Choose the Right Height
When he’s sitting back and has his feet on the floor, are his knees higher than his waist or lower? Is the chair or sofa so low that he drops when he gets low enough? Ideally, he’ll have an easier time standing up or sitting down on a higher chair. It’s also easier if the knees and hips are at the same level.
Would Motorized Chairs Be Easier?
Your dad may find a motorized chair is easier to use. If the chair lifts him to a standing position, he won’t have a hard time standing and getting his balance.
Aim for High Backs
Chairs and sofas need to have a high back. It should be firm rather than plush and soft. It should hold his back straight while he’s sitting. When he goes to get back up, he’s not reclined and struggling to sit up.
Look for Supportive Arms
The arms on a chair or sofa need to be sturdy and supportive. When he stands up or sits down, the arms should offer the support he needs to balance his weight and take some of the burdens from the knees.
Is your dad becoming a little less mobile? Has his mobility declined to a point that he needs ambulation services from a caregiver? Elderly care providers can help you design the right care plan to meet his needs and budget. Call an elderly care agency to get started.