4 Ways To Reduce The Risk Of Falling At Home
In Australia, around 30% of older adults experience at least one fall each year. Most of these falls occur at home and can sometimes cause injury, or a trip to the hospital. Luckily, falls are mostly preventable. So, here are a few easy ways to reduce your risk of falling at home.
1. Keep It Clean
Throughout our lives, we tend to accumulate a lot of stuff. But this extra stuff can sometimes become a hazard when navigating our home. So, assess any high-traffic areas. Are they easy to navigate, with plenty of walking space? Is there anything on the floor, like boxes and loose extension cords? Walkways should be wide, as clear as possible, and free from clutter.
2. Safety First
There are a few high-fall-risk areas around the home. These include the bathroom, kitchen, and stairs—both inside and outside. It’s essential to have rubber, non-slip mats in any areas that may get wet, such as the bathroom and kitchen floor, or the front doorstep. Grab rails should also be installed in these high-risk areas. Note: never grab onto fixtures (such as towel racks) that have not been designed to support excess weight.
3. Vision IS Key
As we get older, our eyesight can start to decline. And with decreased vision, comes an increased risk of falling. So, make sure to get regular check-ups at the optometrist. Wear any prescription glasses at all times around the home (if necessary). And change or install lightbulbs in dark areas, to increase visibility.
4. Dress The Part
Do you often only wear socks at home? Or do you walk around with bare feet? It’s normal to want to be as comfortable as possible while at home. But wearing supportive shoes with extra-grippy soles at all times, can go a long way to reducing the risk of having a fall. Also, avoid wearing loose-fitting or droopy clothing that can catch on door handles, or get stuck under your feet.