Mother is active and loves to cook, but tends to be forgetful. Are there ways to make her kitchen safer?
Help your mother rearrange the items she uses most so they are within easy reach, and make sure she has a step stool with a safety rail available for reaching high places. Keep heavier items in low cupboards and make sure she can plug all of her appliances directly into an electrical socket to avoid using extension cords. Encourage your mother to use a timer to help her remember to turn off all the appliances when she is finished. It’s also important to keep a multipurpose ABC-rated fire extinguisher in the kitchen—and remind your mother (or have pictures) how to use it.
My dad is increasingly having trouble with stairs and we can’t afford a lifting device. What do you recommend to promote safe, easier access?
How much trouble is your dad having? Has he fallen, or does he take a very long time to climb the stairs? Is there a sturdy banister to help him? If there’s a landing, does a chair fit so he has a place to rest if he needs it? Make sure the stairs are kept free of clutter and that he’s not rushing when he does go upstairs. Take all these things into consideration, and if he does have great difficulty then it may be time for him to move to the lower level. If there are bathroom facilities close by, you can make a bedroom out of a room on the main floor.
Can my mother’s nurse recommend over-the-counter drugs?
A nurse will not usually recommend any particular over-the-counter drugs, but your mother’s doctor or pharmacist will be able to do so. It is very important to avoid any negative interactions between over-the-counter products and your mother’s prescription medications. Your pharmacist is an excellent resource for any drug-related questions.