Pool Fences Help Older Adults Stay Safe
A swimming pool is an excellent addition to any home and can help older adults stay safe. It offers a backyard oasis for all members of the family to enjoy. It is a place for family and friends to convene and enjoy the outdoors, but it can also become a safety concern.
Every single day in the United States, approximately 11 people unintentionally drown, according to the CDC. Still, when we think about creating a safer pool experience, we typically think about protecting pets and children. It is also important to include adults, especially older adults, in our safety planning.
How does pool fencing help create a safer environment for families?
Pool fences can decrease the risk of a person drowning by 83% when compared to pool areas without fences. Pool fences can protect all members of our family, including pets, kids, adults, and seniors. Fences act as a deterrent. They work to keep pets and kids entirely out of harm’s way, as long as they are used correctly. But for older adults, they work to provide an extra layer of safety that could mean the difference between life and death.
They might not know how to swim: Swimming is a learned skill, and it shouldn’t be assumed that everyone knows how to do it. A pool fence can help prevent an older adult, that doesn’t know how to swim, from unintentionally finding themselves in a pool without the skills they need to get themselves out.
Activity level: Depending on the activity level of the senior in your life, finding themselves in a pool without the proper supports might be life-threatening. Pool fences can separate the rest of the yard from the pool area so family members don’t find themselves in a dangerous place.
Slippery exterior: If your pool is in your backyard, it might be where the family spends a large part of their time. Even if they are not going into the pool, they may have to walk around the pool exterior to reach certain areas of your yard. A pool fence ensures the pool area is blocked off from other backyard areas. It separates the slippery surfaces around the pool to reduce the risk of a family member slipping on wet surfaces and possibly falling into the pool.
Medications: Certain medications can create mind fog that can have the same effects as alcohol. Also, if the older adult in your life has dementia or Alzheimer’s, they may find themselves in your yard without their awareness.
Benefits of Pools and how Older Adults Stay Safe
Pools have many benefits for seniors when they are used and can help older adults stay safe. Pools can help with joint health and help ease pain or body aches. It is also a great way to increase activity while still keeping the movement low impact. Pools can help seniors improve their endurance, strength, and flexibility, which are all necessary for an active lifestyle.
Even though a pool fence dramatically improves the safety of your pool area, remember that fences are not a catch-all. It is important to always have at least two people at the pool at a time. It is essential to always have one person that knows how to swim very well and feels comfortable pulling someone from the water.