What is “Aging in Place”?
“Aging in Place” focuses on adapting or creating homes that are barrier-free, ergonomic, efficient, safe and able to endure the aging process. Aging in Place promotes the idea that individuals should be able to live out their lives in their own homes.  (Also referred to as “productive aging” or “aging at home”)

What is Universal Design?
“Universal design” is the concept of creating products and environments that are attractive and usable by everyone, regardless of age or ability.  Good universal design elements should be user-friendly, simple, intuitive, efficient, ergonomic, and virtually invisible, melding with the functionality and aesthetics of the current space. 

Do you also address the exterior of the home?
Zero Barriers Inc. will work with you to find creative solutions to make both the interior and exterior of your home barrier-free.  For the exterior of the home we help with ramps, pathways, decks, garages, garden access and more.  Call for more details.

What is an Occupational Therapist (OT)?
An occupational therapist is a licensed health professional who specializes in identifying barriers that mentally, physically, developmentally, or emotionally limit an individual’s ability to live and function independently. OTs perform a comprehensive analysis of the individual and their environment and prescribe interventions to overcome identified barriers through task adaptation, assistive equipment, and/or environmental modifications.

What is a CAPS specialist?
A Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) has been trained in the following:

  • The unique needs of the older adult population
  • Aging-in-place home modifications
  • Common remodeling projects
  • Solutions to common barriers

There are multiple professionals who hold the CAPS designation including contractors, architects, designers, physical and occupational therapists. As rehab professionals we combine our knowledge of medical conditions with our CAPS training to ensure that any modifications made to the home are appropriate for your condition.

What can I do to prevent falls in the home?

  • Check your vision at least once a year.
  • Stay active and exercise regularly.
  • Take a Tai Chi class. Tai Chi has been proven to increase balance skills.
  • Wear appropriate shoes that have a firm, nonslip sole with a back (no flip-flops).
  • Stand up slowly after sitting or lying and pause a moment before moving to prevent sudden onset of dizziness (hypotension) due to rapid postural changes.
  • Review the drugs you are taking with your doctor to see if any of the drugs increase the risk of falling. Ask if the doctor can lower the dose or use an alternative drug.
  • Be aware: short-term risk of single and recurring falls may triple within two days after a medication change (CDC, 2007).