Falls Prevention - Keeping Your Home Safe
Most falls tend to happen in the home so keeping your home and garden tidy and free of obstacles can help to reduce the risk of falls. Here are some top tips to help you keep safe:
Keep the floor clear
Don’t leave items on the floor such as shoes, books or boxes as these become trip hazards. Steps or stairs in particular should be kept clear.
Tape cords and wires
Stray telephone cords or trailing wires could easily be tripped over. If possible, hide these away or tape them flat to a wall. Don’t run cables across the floor, try to run behind furniture/along walls where possible.
Avoid bathroom slips
Wet surfaces can be dangerous – place a non-slip rubber mat on the floor and fit a grab rail to help you get in and out of the bath or shower.
Keep your kitchen safe
Make sure you put frequently used items on lower shelves so that they are easier to reach. If you must use a step stool to reach higher up, ensure that it has an integral bar to grip.
Watch out for rugs
Rugs can look lovely in the home but frayed rugs or sticking up corners are actually one of the most common causes of falling amongst older people. The simplest solution is to remove them completely or use a double-sided non-slip backing to prevent the rug from slipping.
Keep your home well lit
Using additional lighting around the home can help to prevent tripping over hazards. Make sure that light bulbs are replaced, and use a lamp or a nightlight to light the path from your bedroom to the bathroom to make falls at night less likely.
Making your garden safe
Paving stones and driveways can become slippery, particularly when wet or if there are fallen leaves around. Try to keep paths clear and use salt or grit if you need to go outside during cold, icy spells.
If you have uneven levels outside or have steps down from your front door, ensure that hand rails are fitted so you have something to hold on to.
Choose your footwear carefully
It’s not just household items that can be tripping hazards – ill-fitting footwear could cause you to fall over. Make sure that slippers or any shoes that you are wearing around the home or garden fit snugly and have good grips on the sole.
Come back tomorrow for our next blog on Fall Prevention tips.