How to Make Your Home Safer If You Have Low Vision Due to Retinal Disease

Submitted by Elman Retina Group on July 17, 2020

Safe Home with Low VisionLow or declining vision due to retinal disease affects countless aspects of day-to-day life. Something as simple as preparing a meal or using the bathroom in the middle of the night can be hazardous if you can’t see clearly. You may start to worry that your declining vision will affect your ability to live independently.

To reduce your risk of accident or injury and preserve your independence, the team at Elman Retina Group encourages you to make your home safer by taking a few precautions.

Get Rid of Clutter

Getting rid of unwanted household items is an important safety matter, as clutter can create unexpected hazards as you move through your home. Pay particular attention to clutter that impedes your walking pathways in and around your home.

Use Better Lighting

A well-lit home is crucial to minimizing the risk of injuries and accidents. Experiment with lighting until you find a combination that works well for each room and the activities you enjoy. For instance, direct lighting is best for rooms in which you like to read, play cards, sew or craft. In the kitchen, avoid overhead lighting, which can produce shadows, and experiment with under-counter lights or pendant lights that hang over food preparation areas. In the bathroom, night lights or low-level strip lighting are particularly helpful.

Remove or Secure Rugs

Poor lighting and loose throw rugs are a dangerous combination. Make sure any rugs in your home are non-skid. Secure loose rugs with rug pads or double-sided tape.

Secure Extension Cords

After you are finished securing any loose rugs, tape loose extension or electrical cords along baseboards so you do not risk tripping over them.

Create Visual and Tactile Organizational Systems

Using organizational systems can help you better navigate your home and find the items you need for daily living. Designate spots for commonly used items and always return each item to its proper spot so you know where to find it. If you need to organize areas like cabinets or drawers, visual or tactile systems can help.

A good visual system is to use large, colorful labels to identify certain items. Depending on the clarity of your vision, you may find a tactile system, such as placing rubber bands or pieces of felt on individual items, more useful.

Make Emergency Information Accessible

In case of an emergency, you want to be able to find the phone numbers you need quickly. Post the contact information for loved ones in large print where the numbers can be easily accessed. This may be next to a landline telephone or on the refrigerator.

For more information about the management of retinal disease or tips for living independently with declining vision, contact Elman Retina Group today.