As you grow older, physical changes and health conditions, as well as the medications used to treat those health conditions, can lead to falls in older adults. So, it’s very important to make sure that the older adults at home are safe. If you’re an older adult or have someone older who stays with you, here are a few things you can do to ensure their safety and prevent falls.
Tips To Prevent Falls In Older Adults
- Pack up Clutter: The best way to prevent falls is to keep your home neat and tidy. Take away all clutter such as stacks of old newspapers, boxes, magazines and electrical cords, particularly from hallways and stairways.
- Repair tripping hazards: Sometimes home fixtures can contribute to falls which can result in injuries. Examine each area of the house, looking for things such as loose carpet, holes or long threads in carpet, slippery throw rugs or wood floorboards that stick up. Then repair, take away or replace those things to prevent falls.
- Install grab bars and handrails: These safety devices are essential for going up and down stairs, getting on and off the bathroom, stepping in and out of the bathtub while not injuring you. Use a shower seat, which permits you to sit down while showering. If you live in an apartment on a higher floor, you can request the society to make these additions or repair handrails if not sturdy.
- Avoid wearing loose clothing: Loose fitting garments can make you more likely to fall. Select better-fitting and properly hemmed clothing that doesn’t drag on the floor.
- Adequate lighting: To make a home that is more safe for older adults, install brighter, light-weight bulbs wherever required, particularly in stairways and narrow hallways. Place night lights in the bedroom and bathroom.
- Make it non-slip: Bathrooms as well as floors in kitchen, toilet, and porches can become more dangerous once wet. To prevent fall on smooth surfaces, prefer non-slip mats. Secure loose rugs with round faced tape, tacks or a slip resistant backing. Use self-adhesive, non-skid mats or safety treads in bathtubs and showers. Place non-slippery rugs on bathroom floors and pads under rugs on clean floors.
- Choose footwear wisely: Consider changing your footwear which should be properly fitted, durable shoes with non-skid soles to prevent falls. You can also purchase non-slip socks that have grips on the soles of the feet if shoes are uncomfortable.
- Make sure that chairs and beds are durable and easy to get into and out of & that tables and benches don’t have sharp corners.
- Differentiate between the stairs: Ageing eyes might not be able to separate one step from the next. To help, you may try replacing the carpet on every step to make the steps easier to identify. In the case of bare steps, try painting each step a unique color. You can request your society to do this if you live in an apartment. Every older adult in your building will benefit from this!
We hope these tips help you prevent falls in older adults at home! Do let us know your thoughts in the comments below. For more on the health and wellness of senior citizens, check out Healthy Reads or tune in to classes on GOQii Play.
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