Falling is the leading injury in seniors. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “one in three elderly people will fall this year, and less than half of them will speak to their doctors about it.” Results can range from cuts, bruises, and hip injuries, to damage to the head or brain.
Preventing falling starts in the home. Whether it is a wet floor, clothing getting caught on something, a creaky staircase, or an electrical cord, falls most commonly happen inside the home. Here are five important tips to help create a safe home environment for seniors:
- Remove clutter. Stacks of books, newspapers, or boxes might stand in the way of a senior moving through their home. Ensure all common areas are tidy, with little clutter taking up space.
- Repair damages within the home. Loose floorboards and rugs can lead to potentially dangerous falls, and should not be ignored when noticed. Make sure there are non-slip mats in all of the bathrooms.
- Brighten up the environment. Make sure the home is adequately lit and all areas are visible. Use brighter light bulbs to illuminate stairwells and hallways. Plug in nightlights in bedrooms and bathrooms.
- Install handrails or grab bars. These safety devices can assist with going up and down stairs, getting on and off the toilet, and stepping in and out of the bathtub or shower. If necessary, have a handyman come in for help.
- Wear appropriate shoes and clothing. Loose clothing has the potential to get in the way when walking, leading to a trip and fall. Additionally, wearing shoes at all times in the home will add more grip on the feet and can prevent a fall. Socks might be comfortable, but they are also slippery.
While these tips are more universal to any senior, there are additional steps that will prevent falls. If possible, living on one single level eliminates the danger of falling down the stairs. Make sure to plan specific prevention techniques with a doctor or caregiver. Falling in the home will happen a lot less with the proper organization.
ElderCare 4 Families creates a unique, customized plan of care designed to address ways to improve home safety. We focus on the little things so our caregivers can earn the level of trust usually only given to family members. Become apart of our caring family. Contact us today for a free one-time assessment.