I remember it like yesterday. My mom was still living independently, and safety was becoming more and more of a concern. It’s so difficult to know when it’s time to broach the subject of assisted living when you’re dealing with someone who would rather die than give up their independence.

You begin to think – if I take away her freedom and independence, am I killing her in the most cruel way possible? Yet, you know there are safety issues, so you prolong the inevitable by finding ways to “dementia proof” the house.

One of the most common areas of concern is the kitchen, specifically the possibility of starting a fire on the stove.

I just learned about a product that may help provide some peace of mind. It’s called StoveTop FireStop; aka “Fireman in a Can.” The FireStop is mounted under the range hood and is automatically activated when a flame reaches it. Upon activation, a powder fire suppressant is released to extinguish the flame.

Make no mistakes, there comes a point when even something like this isn’t enough; the risk simply outweighs any and all possible safety measures. But, if you’re at a point where you feel your loved one can remain independent for awhile longer with some safeguards in place, StoveTop FireStop may be worth a try. It’s definitely something I would have considered for Mom.