Special to the Opelika Observer

In recognition of National Safety Month, the Home Instead Senior Care office serving the  Auburn and Opelika area is offering free home safety checks for seniors.

Conducted by local senior care experts, the safety checks will be offered through June.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 20 million seniors ages 65 and older visit the emergency room each year with almost a third of the visits related to injuries, many of which are sustained in the home. However, almost half of all home accidents by seniors can be avoided, according to a recent survey of emergency room doctors conducted by the Home Instead Senior Care® network.

“The home should be the safest and most comfortable place for aging seniors,” said Bridget Sager of the Home Instead Senior Care office serving Auburn and Opelika. “It is critical for families and seniors to invest the time in identifying the necessary home safety modifications.”

Senior home safety experts recommend that adult children of seniors take at least one day each year to perform a thorough safety check of their parents’ home.

“An annual safety check can help seniors avoid dangers that could threaten their independence,” said Sager. “When we go into homes, we see a lot of red flags that are easily overlooked by those who are familiar with the home. Most of the time, these are relatively easy and affordable fixes.”

To request a free home safety check or the home safety checklist, call Home Instead Senior Care at 321-1050. For other resources, including an online safety assessment, visit www.makinghomesaferforseniors.com.