Tips for tackling housework as you get older

These tasks can seem overwhelming.

As we get older, the daily tasks that we’ve always done can get harder and harder. Whether you’ve got injuries or sore joints that make it difficult to do certain things, or you just don’t have the energy you used to have, these jobs can seem overwhelming. We don’t want to lose our independence in doing things like cleaning our homes (although some help would be nice), so we need to make some adjustments to make them easier.  

Read more: The home safety tips that could save your elderly parent’s life

Try these tips to take some of the pain out of your day-to-day tasks.

1. Break the tasks up

If your jobs seem overwhelming, break them into smaller tasks and spread them out so you can rest in between. Vacuum today, then mop tomorrow for example. The job is still getting done, but it won’t be so exhausting if you can recover in between.

2. Don’t do it all in one day

If you’ve got one day each week set aside to clean, stop. Assign different tasks to different days so you’re not overdoing it.

3. Adequate is good enough

It can be difficult to let go if you have particularly high standards, but you may need to reassess what is necessary. Is it essential to iron the sheets and vacuum daily? If anything can be cut back, it will help.

4. Change your tools

It is worth investing in tools that will help you. Get a long-handled dustpan and brush to avoid bending over more than is necessary. Likewise, it might be time to trade in your heavy old vacuum cleaner for a lightweight model.

5. Keep more than one set of cleaning products

If you have a big house, or stairs, it is worth keeping separate products for each floor or end of the house. This will stop you having to lug your tools around, or up and down stairs. It can make a bigger difference than you’d imagine!

6. Use a stool or chair

If you can sit down while you’re working, make the most of it! For things like ironing or chopping veggies for dinner, pull up a seat and rest your knees!

7. Reduce your clutter

It might sound like more work in the short-term, but in the long-term you’ll thank yourself. After all, less clutter means less things to clean!

8. If you have a dishwasher, use it

A lot of people hand wash dishes if there are only a few, but it’s better for you to just poop them in the dishwasher. Even if you don’t run it until it’s full, it will save you some work. Also, more things than dishes can be cleaned in there. Most things that are plastic or glass – even the plates from your stove burners, and grease traps from the exhaust fan!

9. Line your oven

Cleaning the oven can be one of the hardest jobs when you’re getting older. Being down on your hands and knees, not to mention inhaling the toxic chemicals, can be painful and exhausting. Line your oven in tin foil as much as you can; that way when the grease and grime build up, you can simply throw the foil in the bin.

Do you have any other tips for making housework easier?

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