How To Prevent Falls At Home
By Richard Syner
According to the National Institutes of Health (http://nihseniorhealth.gov/falls/toc.html), at least one in three people age 65 years or older fall each year. To put it another way, more than 1.6 million older Americans go to the emergency room for fall-related injuries. This frequent occurrence makes falls the number one cause of fractures, hospital admissions for trauma, loss of independence and injury-related deaths for the elderly.
One of the easiest ways to help prevent falls is to perform a home safety inspection. Each area in and around your home needs to be assessed for possible safety hazards. In this article I am going to show you some safety measures you can take at home to help prevent fall related injuries.
PREVENT FALLS IN THE LIVING ROOM
Make sure cords are clear from walking path.
Get rid of or fasten down throw rugs.
Get rid of clutter from walking path.
Install adequate lighting.
PREVENT FALLS IN THE BEDROOM
Make sure the light switch is close to door, bed and bathroom..."touch lights" are very helpful.
Place the phone by the bed.
Get out of bed slowly.
Clear cords from walking path.
Long night gowns may cause you to trip.
PREVENT FALLS ON STAIRS, HALLWAYS & PATHS
Keep clutter free.
Make sure carpet is secure.
Put paint or colored/reflective tape on each step.
Light switch is at top and bottom of stairs.
Reduce glare especially in stairwell.
PREVENT FALLS IN THE KITCHEN
Get rid of throw rugs.
Bring items that are used often to waist level.
Adequate lighting especially at entrance.
Remove any cords from floor.
Clean any spills off floor.
PREVENT FALLS IN THE BATHROOM
Install grab bars and hand rails by toilet and bath.
Use non-skid mats.
Empty the tub before getting out.
Non-skid tub liners or stickers.
Always keep night light on.
PREVENT FALLS ON OUTDOOR WALKWAYS
Keep clutter free.
Clear sidewalk weeds and roots.
Paint steps a bright color or use alternate or reflective colors to aid vision.
And lastly, have your loved ones wear a medical alarm button especially if they spend a hours by themselves. Medical alarms will not prevent a fall but will provide emergency monitoring at the push of a button in case of a fall or accident.
If you can implement some of these safety measures in and around the house you stand a much better chance at avoiding a serious fall injury. Take a few minutes to look around your home to see if there are any safety hazards that may cause a fall.