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Tips to Easily Fall-Proof Your HomeSeptember 19, 2022
We spend a great deal of time in our homes, especially so in the last two and a half years. While we consider our home a safe space, it is not without its fair share of risk, especially for seniors. According to the National Institute on Aging, six out of every 10 falls happen in the home. With September being Falls Prevention Month, here are some tips that you can use to easily fall-proof your home.
First and foremost, keep hallways and stairs clear of any kind of clutter. Avoid keeping papers, clothes, books, and shoes in these areas as they present hazards. Keep electrical wires and cords away from these areas, as well. Wire covers or cable staples could assist with this by fastening the wires to an area of the wall and out of the way of walking paths.
Furniture can also present fall hazards, so ensure your furniture is organized efficiently and out of the way of any walking areas. Also, keep a close eye on your pets and where they are walking. Dogs and cats, no matter the size, could easily become tripping hazards.
Lighten Up Your Home
Lights throughout your home are critical for you to see any potential hazards. Consider having light switches at the top and bottom of stairs, as well as at both ends of hallways. Night lights in both your bedroom and bathroom provide additional support, especially during the evening hours.
Having a flashlight on hand by your bed is also crucial in case the power ever goes out in your home. Of course, just having these lights in place isn’t enough. Be sure to use them to avoid any potential falls.
Other Tools to Help Prevent Falls
There are several other tools that can help prevent falls, especially for use in the bathroom, which is the most dangerous room in your home for falls. Consider installing grab bars in showers and alongside the toilet, in addition to a raised toilet seat with handles. Tub/shower seats will also aid in preventing falls. Non-slip mats should also be used in your bathrooms, in addition to non-skid mats and strips throughout the other rooms of your home.
Consult with your primary care physician on whether or not canes or walkers would be beneficial for you. These devices help promote both safety and independence. An occupational therapy or physical therapy program could also be recommended. These programs improve and restore mobility, movement, strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination.
Did you know that Redeemer Health Home Care offers a fall risk home assessment program called Life Assess? Through this program a nurse visits your home to assess hazards within your home. We:
- Recommend simple home modifications to reduce risks of falls, like removing tripping hazards.
- Assess medications and blood pressure that may be causing falls or imbalance issues.
- Provide exercises to improve balance and strength.
- Provide strategies to address low vision.
- Provide strategies to help reduce falls at night and in the bathroom.
- Recommend any needed equipment and footwear to keep you safe in the home.