Spring is the season most often associated with new beginnings, so it only makes sense that many people look forward to annual spring cleaning. After a long winter, the warmer weather is wonderful for airing out the house and tackling overdue chores.
However, it’s not just a time for catching up. It can also be an opportunity for older adults to look toward the future, especially if you anticipate downsizing sometime down the road. With that possibility in mind, these spring cleaning tips for seniors can help make the task extra productive while making your current living environment extra safe.
Consider Future Plans
Before you tackle this year’s spring cleaning, think about where you envision yourself in six months or a year. Spring cleaning for a senior considering downsizing into a smaller place might involve extra work to reduce clutter and eliminate things you don’t need.
Most senior living communities, including Village on the Green in Orlando, offer a wide range of floor plans so you can choose the living space that fits your needs and budget. Choosing to downsize means less work to keep your home clean. It also means you may need to start sorting your things to determine what you want to keep, as well as things you might pass on to loved ones, sell, donate or trash.
Organize Important Documents
Another spring cleaning tip for seniors is to use the occasion to update your paperwork. In addition to making sure all your medical, financial and legal information is current, be sure trusted family members know where to find these documents. That way, if there’s an emergency, someone you trust can help provide details on your medical history, pay bills or handle other business on your behalf.
Make Changes for Safety
For seniors, spring cleaning can also mean using a critical eye to identify household items that may be affecting your mobility. If you’re used to a throw rug in a certain place, you may not think much of it. However, removing a tripping hazard is a simple way to make your living space safer and reduce fall risks. It’s also a good way to start eliminating items you won’t want or need in your new home.
While you’re assessing safety, check the medicine cabinet and safely dispose of any expired medication. Also be on the lookout for other items you should toss, like expired food.
Check on Emergency Systems
Don’t forget to check your smoke detectors at every season change to ensure they’re in good working order. Replace the battery, or if your unit is more than 10 years old, it may be time for a replacement. Also check other safety resources, such as carbon monoxide detectors. If you don’t have a detector, install one so you can identify a buildup of this odorless gas before it becomes deadly. Also check the expiration dates or pressure gauges on any fire extinguishers to ensure they’re still effective.
Ask for a Helping Hand
Be realistic about what you can safely accomplish on your own, and avoid taking unnecessary risks or moving heavy items by yourself. Use tools to help make the job easier, like a duster with an extended wand to reach high places, and don’t be shy about asking family or friends for help with tasks that you find too physically challenging.
One final spring cleaning tip for seniors: As you’re tackling your chores this spring, be honest with yourself about whether you still enjoy your home care responsibilities. If the freedom of turning the job over to someone else and access to resort-like amenities is appealing, retirement living may be for you. Fill out the form at the bottom of the page to consider making your future home at Village on the Green.