Product categories

Older people

Group of older people enjoying lunch

As an older person, you may have different product needs to others. Changes that can occur with ageing may also affect your ability to use products safely. As people age, they may experience issues with abilities such as:

  • dexterity
  • mobility
  • sensory awareness (hearing, vision, etc.)
  • memory
  • comprehension.

These issues can result in increased product hazards, which can make certain tasks—even everyday actionsmore challenging for you.

Research has found that most injuries to older people happen while they’re at home. This is not an inevitable part of the ageing process. According to the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC) there are many reasons why such injuries occur. You can read Consumer product related injuries in older persons, Report 162 at the MUARC website.

As you grow older it is important to consider your safety needs and ensure that you can use furniture, flooring and other goods in your home safely.

A number of retired older people take up volunteer work or look after their grandchildren. Those who care for children, even on a part-time basis, need to be aware of safety aspects relating to infant and nursery products, as well as to toys. Many of these products have mandatory safety standards, and most of the regulations are relatively new.

People who are retired or semi-retired may also take on home improvement tasks as they find more time. Do-it-yourself (DIY) tasks carry their own safety risks. It is wise for older people to be extra cautious when doing DIY jobs in and around the house, regardless of how much experience they have. For example, older men tend to suffer ladder-related injuries more than others. Many of these victims are skilled handymen who have simply become complacent.

When out of the house, some older people use mobility scooters to get around. There are safety risks involved in using these vehicles, so it is important for users to choose the right ones and ride in them safely.

Using products safely at home and when out and about can help you avoid injuries and enjoy this stage of your life. This page provides links to information that can help you achieve this safety.

Relevant product categories

See also products other authorities cover under the Product categories section.

Tips, myths and FAQs

For all tips related to consumer safety, view Consumer focused tips.

For all myths related to consumer safety, view Consumer focused myths.

For all FAQs related to consumer safety, view Consumer focused FAQs.

Bans

Bans

View current bans.

Mandatory Standards

Mandatory Standards

View current mandatory standards.

Recalls

Recalls

Check www.recalls.gov.au for any recalls related to this page.

Safety issues

A recent South Australian coronial inquiry into the death of an elderly person has recommended that the public be alerted to the dangers of incorrectly installed or the inappropriate use of bed poles.
This page provides information about Bisphenol A, a chemical widely used in plastic and metal food containers and some plastic eating utensils.
This page provides information about chemicals in consumer products.
This page provide safety information about flammable clothing.
This page provides information about formaldehyde in consumer products.
This section provides information on phthalates in consumer products.
Tumble dryers can cause household fires.
This section provides information on unsafe furniture.
This page provides information about how to avoid buying unsafe products in an online environment.
This section provides information on risks associated with unsafe second-hand products.
This page provides information on how to avoid injuries and drownings related to common water hazards.

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