We all want to stay at home as we age, we feel better surrounded in familiarity. We should all be so lucky as to age gracefully in our own space, but we must actively monitor the safety risks of our surroundings. Approximately six out of every ten falls happen in the home and more than half of those falls require hospitalization. Are you living at home or care for a parent that is living at home? Do you worry about falling and needing help? Are you aware of what to look for to decrease your risk of falling? Below are some helpful tips to make your home a little bit safer and prevent falls.
- Remove or secure all rugs: Rugs are a source of falls due to the risk of catching your foot, cane or walker in the gap between the floor and the rug. There is also risk that the rug will slide out from under you as you walk across if it is not secure. The safest option is to remove all rugs, but we know that some people want to keep them for decorative or sentimental reasons. If this is the case, get some rug strips to secure the rug to the floor and reduce the risk of it being a fall hazard.
- Clear the pathways: Have someone walk the pathways in your house with you and remove any items that are in the way. Something as simple as a book or pair of shoes or as dangerous as a wire or cord could be in your path and could cause you to fall.
- Keep walkways and stairs well lit: Be sure to use the lights when getting up at night so not to fall in the dark. Also, invest in a few nightlights for the halls and bathrooms. There are inexpensive motion detector nightlights that can help to keep areas well lit and reduce the risk of falling at night.
- Invest in a handrail in the shower: Showers are slippery, and you don’t need to be a senior to fall in the shower, but the risk does increase as you age. Invest in a bar for the shower so that you can steady yourself or catch yourself when you lose your balance.
There are many other simple ways to reduce your risk of falling at home. If you would like a complimentary home safety assessment, please give us a call at (704) 668-6558.