The older we get the more light we need to see. As your eye ages the lens gets harder, starting to yellow and the pupil gets smaller, letting less light in. Seniors, 65 years and older, can sometimes require twice as much light as younger people.
One of the best ways to light a home for seniors is with plenty of natural light. More windows and skylights are better for elderly eyes. Exposure to natural daylight can improve sleeping habits and decrease the likelihood of depression. Try painting your walls a lighter color so that they reflect more light. Use sheer window coverings to let in more light and also help reduce glare.
Task lights are also very helpful for aging eyes. In the kitchen you might want to install lights under the counters. Also look to install lights in areas where you are spending time working on hobbies that might require attention to details. LED lights are a great option for seniors as they will require less changing of light bulbs, meaning less time climbing on a ladders, a task which could increase the chance of falls.
Another renovation that might be helpful is installing light switches near the entrance to every room. Consider installing rocker light switches with a backlight or night-light in them to help you find the switches more easily in the dark. To help prevent falling in the middle of the night try using night-lights or installing a light switch near the bed. Another option in the bedroom is a low-level light that is activated by a motion sensor, which will turn on automatically when someone gets out of bed.
Other areas that tend to get overlooked are closets and the laundry room. Adding lighting in these areas helps the senior eye distinguish colors more easily. In the bathroom try adding task lights on each side of the mirror instead of just overhead. Overhead lights can cause shadows under the chin which can make shaving difficult.
Finally, outdoor lighting is also very important for safety. Make sure that steps and walkways are clearly lit. Lights that projects downward rather than outward are better. Great options for exterior lighting are lights that turn on automatically, such as lights with motion sensors or solar-powered step lights.