As you get older, choosing flooring needs to factor in that you are more prone to slips, trips, and falls than when you are younger. We all face the same problem! It doesn’t mean that you can’t have the style of flooring you want but you might want to consider how the flooring can help you if you do have movement issues.
Should you pick carpets?
Carpets currently account for over half of all flooring sales in the UK. They have been popular for decades and will remain so for many people. For older people, carpets are also a great choice because they are naturally softer and more cushioning if you have a fall.
Another benefit to carpets is that they often help a house feel warmer. If you find that you are prone to feeling cold, then this style of flooring is often the best choice. You can also upgrade underlay to make it both softer to walk on and more insulating.
There are a couple of things to consider when picking carpets. The first is that they are more prone to collecting allergens such as dust or pollen. If you have breathing problems, this might aggravate your condition. Secondly, because of their material, stains do tend to soak into them and require more work to remove – which could be harder if you can’t crouch or kneel.
Wood and laminate flooring
For people with allergies, wood or laminate flooring can be the best option. There is nowhere for those allergens to hide with this type of flooring and they are easy to brush or vacuum clean. They are also very easy to clean as spills can be wiped up with little work and there’s much less chance of a stain appearing.
The biggest downside is the hardness of these materials. If you have a fall on one, you will know about it, that toughness translates into a hard surface to come into contact with. The other issue with this kind of floors is that if you use walking sticks or other aids, they can be slippery on the floors if the rubber ends are wet.
Vinyl and man-made flooring
A strong middle ground flooring option is something like luxury vinyl tiles, vinyl flooring or linoleum. These are all man-made flooring options that use strong and waterproof materials and stain resistant. They don’t hide those allergens either.
Another benefit to these styles is that they won’t mark or scratch if you have a wheelchair or other walking aid moving across them regularly. They aren’t as slippery as laminate or wood floors can be, but a little caution is always wise.
They aren’t as soft as carpets, but they are a little more forgiving than wood. Plus, you can choose different underlays with some styles that make them a little softer. They are a great option for rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms where other types of flooring can struggle to cope with the moisture levels.
What makes perfect flooring for your home depends on your tastes, budget, and any mobility issues you may have. But finding the right one will make your home safer or easier to look after, both of which are very important as we get older.