There's an old expression that says that a person's home is their castle. While the term castle may not relate to everyone, the concept of a sanctuary does - a place where there is a feeling of the presence of a figurative moat surrounding it to protect us from intruders and shelter us from the world, a place where the drawbridge allowing access over the moat can be withdrawn, and one with large, seemingly impenetrable walls.
Home security definitely means keeping intruders out and being able to determine who is seeking access and then on a case-by-case basis being able to grant access to the ones we want to come inside and visit with us or provide services we seek.
There are many ways this can be done through various lighting packages, alarms, video monitoring systems, locks, and other devices. As aging in place professionals, we are interested in helping people feel secure in their homes through means such as these. After all, if they are going to be living in those homes for years, it only make sense that they need to feel secure there.
Home security also takes on two other dimensions besides just the obvious of keeping people out that could mean us or our property harm. These are safety and peace-of-mind.
When people leave their homes - to go to work, shopping, to the park, to a doctor's appointment, school, or any other reason - they contend with other people, traffic, noise, various rules in effect where they are going, congestion, and other stressful issues that are often beyond their control. Finally, after a period of time ranging to several hours away from the one place in the world where they feel truly safe and in charge, they return to their home or apartment.
Some people are fortunate to remain at home most of the time and not venture into the public arena. Still, nearly everyone - except those confined to their homes - faces challenges from the outside world with varying amounts of frequency and intensity, and as often as daily.
So, when people literally survive the pressure, tension, and stress of being outside their homes they are looking for and deserving of a pleasant respite when they return home. We need to help people identify accessibility concerns, lighting issues, and general comfort and convenience deficiencies in their homes so that they can maximize the safe feeling that needs to exist. We need to help them offset the challenges they face when they are away from home so that they enjoy returning to their homes.
This safety allows people to enjoy a peace-of-mind that they are reasonably secure in their dwellings and free from outside influences penetrating their sanctuary without their knowledge and permission and that their home provides a reasonable amount of safety from slips, falls, cuts, burns, and other similar household events that can occur.
People may not have much of a choice about leaving their homes for various reasons, but we can help provide the feeling of well-being and safety they have inside the friendly walls of their homes when they return - regardless of its size, age, or configuration.