Modern Kitchen Design Tips for Seniors
Exploring modern kitchen designs but want to make sure you find the right kitchen to match your lifestyle? Or maybe having a wheelchair accessible kitchen is important to you—either for right now or in the future. Here are a few modern kitchen design tips and features that keep senior living in mind so you can enjoy your active adult lifestyle to the fullest.
This is probably the most essential thing when it comes to keeping a modern kitchen design accessible. An organized kitchen can help you minimize heavy lifting and put everything you need within reach. Here are just a few organizational tips that could belong in any chef’s kitchen.
Start by making sure you’ve lifted everything off of the floor. Even open concept kitchens can be hard to navigate when you have things on the floor. Clear floors are especially important for a more wheelchair accessible kitchen since they’ll give you more space to move around. As an added benefit, keeping food items on the floor is a great way to deter pests.
If you have a pantry, try to organize your shelves with heavier things on the middle level—this way you aren’t straining to pull them down or having to bend down to lift them. You might also consider installing pullout drawers in your cabinets. Pullouts make it easier for you to see what you have on hand and easier to access things that would otherwise be in hard-to-reach places. For corner cabinets, you can always use a lazy susan to access the back ends.
Use insertable cabinet shelves to prevent the stacking of heavy bowls and china, especially in cabinets where you can’t use pullout shelves. These types of shelves come in all sizes and are good for organizing everything from spices to plates, bowls, cups, and even heavier ingredients like flour and sugar.
Hooks are a great option for storing pans. Having pans on individual hooks prevents them from being stacked. There’s nothing worse than needing a pan that’s at the bottom of a heavy pile. You can use lid organizers to store the lids separately in a drawer. Doing this can prevent everything from toppling over and it makes it easier for you to access pans that you use every day.
If you’re planning on making major updates to your kitchen, here are a few things you might want to keep in mind.
Make it easier to pull things in and out of your oven or microwave by keeping them closer to the mid-point of your kitchen. Doing this will not only make for a more wheelchair-accessible kitchen, but it will also reduce some of the heavy lifting. A microwave located above the oven, for example, would be difficult for someone in a wheelchair to reach.
On an ordinary week, we probably underestimate the number of times we have to travel back and forth between the oven and the sink. But as you get older, your dream chef’s kitchen will probably feel more dreamy if you don’t have to walk super long distances with a pot of water to boil or a steaming hot pan that needs to be rinsed.
Most kitchen sinks are double-sided these days. Consider keeping one side of your sink on the shallow end for rinsing off vegetables or holding a few dirty dishes. It’s easier to reach into a shallow sink since a deep sink can sometimes have you feeling like you need to dig in to reach things.
With Del Webb over 55 communities, many of these considerations have already been made for you—like slightly lowered microwaves so you don’t have to reach up as high. You’ll also find open-concept kitchens that offer modern kitchen designs without sacrificing functionality. Find a floor plan that works for you at one of Del Webb’s 55 and over communities near you.
Contributed to The 55+ Society
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