Do you have a relative with mobility issues? Are you looking for ways to adapt their home to their needs? Here are some reasons why hardwood floors can make their life easier:
Hardwood flooring is slip-resistant: Many people do not rely solely on one mobility device. Your relative may use crutches to get to the bathroom in the middle of a night, a walker to prepare food in the kitchen, and a wheelchair when going out in public. Learning to use these appliances confidently requires a safe flooring that's free from potential dangers. Vinyl flooring can be slippery to both feet and crutch tips. Walker wheels can "catch" momentarily in carpeting and make the user prone to falling down. Hardwood floors are slip-resistant for feet and skid-resistant for mobility devices. A hardwood floor allows your relative to safely practice their personal navigational skills so they can feel competent with the device of their choice.
Matte surface has less glare : If your relative has balance issues, they could be relying on visual cues to help them walk from their wheelchair to a favorite chair. Sunlight reflected from a highly polished floor could disrupt their sight and temporarily blind them. This could turn their attempts at self-propelled mobility into a fall hazard. A hardwood floor with a soft, warm finish will reduce the potential dangers caused by light rays flashing across the room and allow your relative to move about more confidently.
Wheelchair scuffs are easy to remove: The rubber tires of a wheelchair can stain carpets and permanently mar vinyl tiling. Remove them easily from hardwood flooring by wiping the marks with a pencil eraser. You can also use the rubber sole of a sneaker because marks from the tire are loosened when scrubbed with anything made of rubber. A clean tennis ball can be used to rub away the rubber scuff marks as well. You can lengthen the reach of the tennis ball by cutting a small X into one side and sticking the ball onto a broom handle. Stubborn stains can be dissolved by rubbing them with a cloth that's been slightly dampened with lighter fluid.
Spills are easy to clean: Adjusting to mobility aids can create a learning curve as the person learns how to carry and manipulate items. They may find that the bottle of pasta sauce that was easy to maneuver a few months ago is now cumbersome and prone to slip from their grasp. A cup of coffee spilled on carpeting could cause them to feel embarrassed about the mess and worry about the potential stain. Your relative could feel self-conscious about their attempts at self-sufficiency if they are worried about causing permanent damage to the floor. Hardwood flooring will lessen their feelings of embarrassment because it's easy to clean and doesn't stain like carpeting. Your relative will be more confident if they know the effects of any accidental spills are easily mopped away.