Monitoring: How can I monitor the safety of both elderly parents?

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How can I monitor the safety of both elderly parents?

Question

Providing care for two elderly parents at the same time has its challenges. If I’m helping my mom to prepare a meal but my father is in the living room, I worry about him getting up and falling or wandering. What can you recommend that I can use to keep an eye on him while I’m in another area of the house?

Our answer

Since monitoring more than one person in a home can be worrisome, you might find using one or more baby monitors gives you peace of mind. There are many baby monitors on the market, so pricing is reasonable. Below are direct links to some examples:

  • Safe&Sound Digital Audio Baby Monitor by VTech (at Toys R Us) allows you to monitor noise in another room. The parent unit can clip onto your belt, and LED lights indicate the level of sound so you can visually monitor the noise level with the unit muted. Prices range from $50 (Cdn).
  • Motorola Video Baby Monitor (at Best Buy Canada) allows you to see what your loved ones are doing, even if you are not in the same room as them. This device not only allows you to easily monitor the video footage on your smartphone, but it also has audio, allowing you to communicate with your family member from the other room. This device costs about $300 to $400 (Cdn). 

You may also want to consider purchasing safety gates to prevent your father from wandering to more risky areas of the house, such as the staircase.

There are a number of other factors that can reduce your father's risk of falling. Your father can complete a BC Government falls risk questionnaire to determine his risk of falling as well as actions that can be taken to prevent falls. 

 

Some technologies and devices may require an in-person assessment. Speak with your health care provider for additional information and support.

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