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Home Safety Checklist for Seniors with Dementia

Individuals living with Alzheimer’s Disease or another diagnosis of dementia should still be able to live comfortably in their homes. However, their condition may expose them to a higher risk of physical harm, a problem that tends to increase as the disease progresses.

By taking specific measures, you can minimize the risk that your loved ones will get hurt around the house. Go through all items on this checklist to ensure maximum safety for older adults in their own home.

General Safety Measures

Some tips apply to dementia care in general, regardless of the situation and type. Identifying potential hazards in the home environment is important, for any family member.

Control the Space

To create a safe environment for a person living with dementia, it is important to install locks to prevent wandering. Keep walkways and rooms bright with adequate lighting to reduce the risk of falls. Securely lock all doors leading outside, and consider using a wireless door access control system.

Store and Secure

Store cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, medications, food, alcohol, and car keys out of reach. It is also essential to remove any furniture that the person might trip over. Moreover, you should avoid the use of extension cords and instead use surge protectors to plug multiple items into one outlet safely – and keep it out of the way. Remember that you should avoid using power tools around someone living with dementia and use caution when using hot water appliances.

Prevent Falls

Falls can be another area of potential concern when creating a safer environment. Install window guards on windows, whether they are located at ground level or higher than 6 feet off the ground. It is a good idea to avoid using throw rugs since loose rugs can be hard to navigate due to reduced depth perception. Consider installing hand rails around the home. Individual needs will vary of course, but any effort improves your home as a safe place for a loved one with memory loss.

Appliance Safety

Regularly check smoke detectors, smoke alarms, and carbon monoxide detectors and replace batteries as needed. Be sure all electrical outlets have safety covers installed to prevent electric shock accidents.

Scam Protection

People with reduced cognitive abilities often can’t identify a scam. Monitor their answering machine and their mail for suspicious communication. Cell phones are of course a common target for scammers, especially in the United States.

For example, you should be aware of scams targeting those living with dementia and take precautions such as shredding documents containing personal information.

Emergency Egress

Also, you should have an emergency plan in case of natural disasters. Keep list of emergency phone numbers near the telephone and identify the top emergency contact number. Include the number to poison control and be sure any medical alert systems in use are tested periodically.

Other safety tips are more specific to certain areas of the house or alternative accommodations. Here are the most important ones.


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To create a cozy and safe bedroom for your loved one, start by keeping the space clutter-free, ensuring no items could cause a trip or fall. Make sure the environment is properly illuminated at night by installing night lights in the room, providing visibility during those dark hours.

Place a bed alarm on the bed, a sensor mat on the floor, or motion sensor in the room to keep caregivers informed if the person decides to get up during the night. For extra support when getting up or moving around, install grab bars near the bed, making it easier for them to navigate.

Fasten all furniture securely to walls to prevent any accidents from happening if they bump into or lean on them.

Lastly, lock and secure windows and any other doors leading outside of the house, providing peace of mind and safety for everyone involved.

Also, follow these tips to help your loved ones get ready to go to bed.


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Creating a safe and comfortable bathroom experience starts with installing grab bars in the bathtub or shower, providing stability and support for your loved one. Non-slip mats on the bathroom floor and in the bathtub are also essential to minimize slipping hazards.

A shower chair can be one of the most important things to consider for the bathroom for both safety and comfort.

Always check the water temperature before entering the bath or shower to avoid burns. Consider installing an automatic shutoff valve on the faucet to prevent scalding from hot water temperatures.

Keep the bathroom floor clear of tripping hazards and use brightly colored tape on steps or other areas that need extra attention for safety purposes.

As pointed out earlier, it’s also important to store medications out of reach, preferably in a locked cabinet or drawer.

For those days when a full bath or shower isn’t necessary, consider using soap, warm water, and a sponge or wet wipes to clean up between baths and showers.

Most importantly, never leave someone with dementia alone in the tub or shower while they are bathing. Always have someone there to assist if needed, ensuring their safety and well-being.


To create a secure and user-friendly kitchen, you should start by installing automatic shutoff devices for all appliances, especially preventing unsafe stove usage. Ensure that all foods are stored appropriately and avoid using expired items.

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Make navigating the kitchen easier by using labels for cupboard doors to identify their contents with pictures or words. Keep spices, medicines, and cleaning supplies stored safely away from countertops and in locked locations.

Ensure a safe space by keeping scissors and knives out of reach. Removing them from countertops and drawers.

When cooking, practice safety by using heat, liquids, and knives cautiously to avoid accidents or injuries. Wearing cut-resistant gloves or finger protectors while handling knives can provide additional security. Moreover, you can invest in safety cutting boards to reduce the risk of slips while preparing meals. Without question, keep a fire extinguisher nearby.

Consider utilizing kitchen aids designed to help seniors with health conditions like arthritis, low vision, frailty, stroke, or dementia complete everyday tasks safely and independently in the kitchen environment.

Stairways and Halls

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Begin by ensuring that stairs and hallways are well-lit, making them easier to identify. Install handrails on both sides of the hallway to offer extra support while walking. You might not realize how much traffic a hallway might get as a portal between the living room and bedroom

It’s essential to keep these areas free of clutter and obstacles to minimize tripping hazards. If possible, consider installing ramps instead of stairs or use stair aids like grab bars or railings for added support. Applying brightly colored tape or paint on the edges of steps can make them more visible for those with dementia.

Safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs can prevent falls and wandering, while non-slip mats add traction when walking up or down the stairs. Also, make sure all furniture is securely fastened to avoid movement or tipping over when someone leans against it in hallways or on stairs.

If needed, have a caregiver accompany your loved one while navigating through hallways and staircases for extra safety.

Home Safety Tips Improve Daily Life

Family caregivers and health professionals alike can make for the best living environment for people living with cognitive impairment by taking appropriate safety precautions. While this may not be a comprehensive guide, by following tips include here, you can go a long way in improving the safety of daily activities. Use these general tips as a preliminary home safety evaluation. Then, make some simple home modifications. By doing so, you can greatly reduce the risk of needing emergency services to visit your home.