Fall Prevention Week will soon be upon us. This year, it falls on September 18-24. If you’re not familiar with this national campaign, it’s designed to increase awareness of the high incidence of falls by seniors each year and provide information about how you can take some simple steps to protect your senior loved one from falling.
Senior1Care supports Fall Prevention Week, and we are happy to share this information with you:
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one in four seniors falls each year in the U.S.; it’s the leading cause of injury and death from injury for their age group.
Other facts from the CDC concerning falls for seniors that you need to be aware of are:
- About 36 million seniors fall every year, resulting in over 32,000 deaths
- Every year, nearly 3 million older adults are treated in emergency departments for injuries suffered from falling
- One out of every five falls causes an injury, such as broken bones or head injury
- Each year at least 300,000 older adults are hospitalized for hip fractures, of which 95% are caused by falling, usually sideways
If you have a senior loved one living at home, these numbers are cause for concern. However, the good news is that you can take some simple steps during Fall Prevention Week and throughout the year to help prevent at-home falls.
9 Tips for Preventing Falls at Home
Here are a few simple home improvements you can make which will help keep your loved one safe from dangerous falls:
Clean up clutter
This is the easiest method for preventing falls. Remove anything your senior can stumble over, like stacks of old magazines and books, especially from hallways and staircases.
Remove tripping hazards
Examine every hallway and room, looking for things like slippery throw rugs, loose carpet, furniture, like ottomans, in the path where they walk, or electrical cords they can trip over. Then, remove, repair, or replace any of these hazards.
Avoid loose clothing
While baggy clothes are very comfortable, they increase the risk of falls. Instead, choose better-fitting clothes that are properly hemmed. It shouldn’t drag on the ground or bunch up.
Install grab bars and handrails
These devices are crucial for bathroom safety, especially stepping in and out of the tub and getting on and off the toilet.
Have adequate lighting
Poor lighting is another fixable hazard. Bulbs should be bright, particularly in narrow hallways and stairways. Night lights in bedrooms and bathrooms also provide safe guidance at night.
Taking their shoes off and wearing socks is more comfortable, but it increases the risk of slipping. Instead, have your loved one keep their shoes on or purchase non-slip socks with grips on the soles.
Make it non-slip
Showers, bathtubs, and floors in bathrooms and kitchens can become very dangerous when wet. Having non-slip mats in these areas can prevent falls.
Live on one level
Even though there may be handrails, stairs are a significant falling hazard. If possible, have your loved one live on one level or try to limit trips up and down stairs.
Many seniors fall at home by becoming dizzy after standing up from a lying or sitting position. Have them pause when standing up to prevent one of those sideways falls that so often fracture hips.
Our caregivers at Senior1Care in Elkhart, Indiana, are trained to be safety-conscious. They’re experienced in caring for individuals with mobility challenges, disabilities, or injuries.
You can trust us to provide care with the utmost kindness and compassion as we help your loved one age in the place where they should feel the safest – at home.
Call us today and schedule your FREE Home Care Consultation. We’ll thoroughly assess the needs of your loved one and design a care plan that will help them enjoy the quality of life they deserve.