Did you know that falls have become the leading cause of injury deaths for senior citizens? Among people 65 years and older,
Tips To Prevent Falls At Home:
• Have regular vision and hearing tests. Discuss falls prevention with your doctor.
• Be sure to take prescription and over-the-counter medications correctly. Keep a medication record and review it regularly with your doctor. Let your doctor know if your medication makes you dizzy or lightheaded.
• Install proper lighting throughout your home. Pay special attention to stairs (with a light switch at both ends) and bathrooms. Use night-lights in the hallways, particularly between the bedroom and bathroom.
• Keep your floor and stairs free of clutter. Avoid the use of scatter rugs.
• Be sure to have at least one handrail (preferably two) on all stairways and steps in your home. Ensure handrails are securely attached and in good repair.
• Check that stairs are in good repair and are slip resistant. If any stairs are broken, have them fixed promptly. Add a strip along the edge of each step in a contrasting color to make it easier to see or use reflective anti-skid treads.
• Take the same precautions for outdoor steps. In addition, arrange to have leaves, snow and ice removed on a regular basis. Use salt or sand throughout the winter months.
• Wear proper footwear. Shoes, boots and slippers should provide good support and have good soles. Avoid loose slippers or stocking feet.
• Install grab bars in all bathrooms, by the toilet and in the bathtub or shower. It's a good idea to have two bars in the tub, one on a side wall and one on the back wall. If you need extra support, consider a bath seat or bench so you can have a shower sitting down.
• Use a rubber mat along the full length in your tub and a non-skid bath math beside the tub.
• Use walking aids and other safety devices for extra safety. If you use a cane or a walker, check that it is the right height and that the rubber tips are not worn. Install stainless steel prongs (ice picks) on canes for safe walking in the winter.
• In case of an accident or fall, it's always a smart investment for senior adults to have a medical alert system, such as Medical Guardian, in place.