What’s the best type of flooring for elderly people?

Slipping and falling are common causes of injury for elderly people and as you get older it becomes harder and harder to recover from a nasty accident. This is why lots of thought should be given to the type of flooring that you have installed in your home if you are worried about slips and trips, or perhaps if you are choosing flooring for an elderly relative’s home.

First of all, it is important to note that, regardless of what type of flooring you decide to have installed, it must also be installed properly and by professionals.  A carpet that is lose, saggy and badly fitted can move under your feet and cause you to fall. Should you be carrying hot food or drinks then this could result in a very nasty accident.  This is particularly important when deciding on flooring for stairs where sagging carpet is very dangerous. Here at Lincolnshire Flooring we employ all of our own carpet and flooring fitters which means that we can be sure that they are trained to the highest standard with both internal and external training, and we offer full site surveys, measuring services and aftercare for peace of mind.

When it comes to deciding which flooring to install to reduce slips and trips there are three good choices that we often recommend. The flooring you choose needs to be not only safe but also comfortable and easy to maintain. It should be comfortable and cushioned to reduce the impact of a fall, and easy to maintain so as to reduce the chances of causing an injury while cleaning. With this in mind, vinyl, carpet and other soft flooring types like cork and rubber flooring are often safe options. Carpet and cork are naturally resistant to slips and offer plenty of friction underfoot which aids stability. While vinyl flooring is slightly tougher and provides less cushioning it is very easy to maintain and only requires a mop or brush to keep clean. In general it is best to avoid laminates and wooden flooring which can be particularly smooth and may increase the chances of slipping over and having an accident.

Bathrooms are one of the most common places where slips and trips occur. After showers and baths these types of rooms can become a slip hazard due to build ups of water and moisture. While ceramic tiles, stone and concrete floors are easy to keep clean, which is important, they are very unforgiving in the event of a slip or trip which means they aren’t always the best choice. Hardwood flooring is also tough and may not provide much cushioning if you have a fall and the moisture of a bathroom tends to make it an unsuitable choice as swelling and cracking can occur. More friendly options for your bathroom include rubber, cork, bamboo, vinyl and carpet. However, carpet can be difficult to keep clean and dry in a bathroom.

No one person’s situation is the same and beyond reducing slips and trips you may also have questions about issues like wheelchair access, warmth and other concerns that need addressing.  At our showroom in Lincoln we have a wide range of different flooring options and our team are always on hand to answer any questions you may have and help you find something suitable. To learn more give us a call on 01522 524374 or pop in to our showroom in Lincoln on Outer Circle Road.

  • 15 Dec 2016