The older we get, the tougher some cleaning tasks become to perform. But, while hiring a cleaning service is by far the simplest way to relieve the stress of keeping a clean home while facing physical and/or mental limitations as we age, there are those who prefer to carry out their own cleaning for as long as they are able to, and with these folks in mind, here are some helpful tips:
Clean little and often
Keeping on top of cleaning is the best way to ensure that it never gets out of hand, and that your home is always neat and tidy. By cleaning up spillages, putting things away after use, and giving countertops a quick wipe down every day, you can prevent the need for a huge clean-up session at the end of the week. Fortunately, most of these tasks require minimal effort, and of course, they can be carried out at your own pace. But, if you don’t feel up to doing them one day (and provided you don’t have too many cleaning lapses), it shouldn’t be a major problem.
Find methods of cleaning that are manageable
Some seniors are perfectly fit and able, while others may have some mobility or flexibility concerns that make cleaning a little more challenging. Whatever your physical limitations may be, there’s usually a method that can be adopted which still gets the job done effectively. With the help of mops and brushes with extendable handles, for example, seniors can still clean but without the risk of injuring themselves, or simply being unable to do it at all.
However, should some tasks simply be beyond your physical capabilities, there’s absolutely no shame in asking a local cleaning to come in and help you out. That way, you can choose which cleaning tasks you want, or are able to carry out, and which ones you want the professionals to handle. Either way, your home still gets cleaned.
Be safe at all times
Below are some basic precautions for seniors to keep in mind and practices to adopt when cleaning, to keep them as safe as possible at all times:
- Wear shoes with non-slip soles – slipping on a wet surface is dangerous for anyone, no matter their age, but for seniors it can be especially dangerous.
- Never climb without a stool or ladder – again, this tip should be taken into consideration by anyone cleaning, but seniors in particular. Tools with extendable handles can eliminate the need for climbing up onto higher surfaces, but for anything that needs cleaning above head height, it might be safer to have a cleaning company do it for you, even if you can use a step stool or small ladder.
- Keep pathways clear of debris and clutter – the last thing you want to do when cleaning is trip over something that has been left in the middle of a corridor or room.
- Put lights on when cleaning – if there isn’t enough natural light when cleaning, switch on some lights that you can clearly see what you’re doing.
- Take regular breaks – avoid tiring yourself out by taking regular, small breaks in between cleaning tasks, and always hydrate well to prevent tiredness and dizziness
- Store cleaning items at waist level – where possible, this will help prevent the need for too much bending down or straining to reach up, particularly when reaching heavier cleaning tools and products
- Keep your mobile phone near you – where possible, you should keep your mobile phone close to you when cleaning, so that should you have a fall or feel unwell, you can easily reach the emergency services or a friend or family member.
Cleaning for seniors is always possible, but it may take a little more planning and careful consideration in order to keep it safe and effective. If you are a senior who needs help with their cleaning, or are concerned about someone senior not being able to keep their home clean, reach out to a local cleaning company for help and guidance.