For seniors, finding a safe floor type should be a priority. Although mobility aids such as senior canes can provide additional stability and balance, investing in a non-slip surface can prevent dangerous slips and falls at home.
Some safe flooring types for seniors include rubber, vinyl, linoleum, and carpet. However, each has its own level of cushion, comfort, and maintenance needed to ensure ease of travel and longevity.
Commonly used in gyms, outdoor areas, and exercise rooms, rubbers can be a durable and safe floor type for seniors to prevent falls from occurring, especially in basements. It provides some cushion and prevents slips due to its grippy texture, making it a good choice for seniors with limited mobility.
Vinyl is another relatively low-maintenance option that is similar to rubber but is more waterproof in nature. It is hard and smooth, making it easy to walk over. Plus, vinyl is a good choice for senior kitchens, laundry areas, and bathrooms. Another perk is its low cost compared to other floor types.
For senior wheelchair and cane users, linoleum is an excellent choice. It resists stains and is easy to clean, unlike carpets. It is also made of natural materials, including cork and jute. However, it can cost a good amount of money to install.
For maximum warmth and comfort, carpeting can be a great alternative to slippery rugs that pose a fall hazard for seniors. It is also very quiet to walk on and can protect seniors from falls and injury in the event of an accident. However, it can be difficult to clean and can be prone to stains.
Seniors trying to be safe at home should look into a combination of different floor types for maximum convenience and durability. Read on to learn more about safety products for seniors and explore our other articles on Senior Strong!
William Rivers is an editor with a master’s degree in Human Services Counseling at Maine State University. He has more than 20 years of experience working in the senior healthcare industry.