Many older adults in America are injured each and every day due to falls that could have been prevented. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that on average 1.4 million people aged 65 and older are hospitalized each year for injuries associated with consumer products. Falls in and around the home are the top reason for injuries in older adults. However, many falls are preventable and there are easy ways to make sure that your loved one is safe at home. Here is a checklist to use to reduce the risk of falling at home.
1. Make sure that there is ample lighting in and around your home. Often, people fall because darkness and shadows will hide potential hazards on the floor.
2. Be sure that there are no obstacles such as cords, rugs, magazines, couch pillows, etc. on the floor that could trip someone. It is safest to have a clear walking path to all points in the house.
3. Ensure that the floors are in good condition and free of slick spots
4. One of the most common places that older adults fall is in the bathroom. Place abrasive strips on the slippery surfaces like the shower floor and place grab bars near the toilet
5. If your loved one lives alone, consider getting them an emergency pendant that will notify EMS if they fall and are unable to get up to a phone. Carrying a cellphone on their person is always a good idea too
Use these tips to make sure that you loved one is safe and free from falls even when you are not with them.