The risk of falling is ever prevalent for the elderly. It can lead to any number of injuries, and is often one of the biggest causes of loss of independence for older adults. There are many reasons as to why an elderly person may fall and injure themselves, from loss of footing to side effects from medications.
Yet no matter the cause, there is a lot that can be done to reduce these risks and help prevent falls occurring in the first place. Let’s take a look at some home safety tips for preventing falls:
Remove Hazards Around the Home
There are many seemingly harmless hazards around any home that can lead to a fall. Try to remove any of these that you might spot, looking for objects that can be tripped over such as rugs, any loose and frayed carpet, exposed wires, and any clutter that could be tripped over.
Use More Lighting
Install as many high-wattage light bulbs as possible around the home to provide better visibility. This includes in lamps, which you could possibly add more of to help increase the amount of lighting that is available. Ensure hallways, stairways, and bathrooms have ample lighting.
Wear Appropriate Attire
What a person is wearing could greatly increase the risk of falling. Loose fitting footwear is the most obvious of these, but even wearing socks or tights on the wrong surface (such as wooden floors) could lead to a fall.
Footwear should be well-fitted and provide ankle support, and be sure to throw out anything that is in a poor condition. Be aware of loose clothing that may trail, as this could also be tripped over and lead to a fall.
Any items around the home that are difficult to access should be reorganized. Avoid using high shelves and place as much as you can on a level that can easily be reached without overreaching or having to climb.
Clean Spillages Instantly
The risk from falling created by a spill is another obvious one. Clean all spillages as soon as you notice them, and be sure to use appropriate cleaning materials as well. For example, non-slip wax is advisable.
Install Handrails Where Needed
For those that must climb stairs, a getting a sturdy handrail installed may be a good idea. The same can be said for rooms such as the bathroom, where smaller grab rails can prevent falls after showering or using the bathtub.
Regular Visits to the Doctor
While not a home safety tip, regular visits to the doctor will allow many risks to be avoided before they even happen. If symptoms such as dizziness or light-headedness should occur waste no time in heading to the doctors to see if you need further treatment.
This could be due to an undiagnosed condition such as blood pressure or relating to an ear infection. Also, be sure to have feet checked regularly for calluses, corn or soars, as foot problems can lead to many risks.