Each year, thousands of seniors fall at home.Last year alone, 20,800 people over the age of 65 died due to falling.2.5 million were treated in emergency departments because of home falls.
Most of these falls could have been prevented simply by using caution and fixing hazards in our home.It is up to us to ensure our own safety to the best of our ability.
Winter is a time for a large amount of falls – outside and inside our homes.
This year we have filled, with the help of Pricilla McGlynn, small easily- handled containers with a salt mixture to be spread on front walks just outside your home's doors so as not to walk out on ice or to be placed in you vehicles and used , if needed, when you happen to find a slippery spot near your car door just before you exit. Some of these were given out as prizes for the January drawing. We still have more at the Sr. Center. Feel free to come and look at them and take one if you you could use it at home or in the car.
Use this Home Fall-Prevention Checklist to help find and fix hazards in your home.
Floors – Be sure all floors and pathways are free of obstructions which could cause you to trip and fall.
Stairs and steps – Remove ALL objects from stairs and landings.Is carpet firmly attached to each step?Secure carpet or remove and apply rubber treads to the stairs.Check that handrails are secure.Review that stairway lighting is sufficient.
Kitchen – Keep things that you use often on lower shelves.Is you step stool level and sturdy? Get one with a bar to hold on to.NEVER use a chair.
Bathroom – Is the tub slippery?Put a no-slip mat or self-stick strips on the floor.Have grad bars installed in the tub or shower area and around the toilet.
Slippers- This is really important. Are you sure that your slippers fit snuggly.Loose slippers are dangerous and lead to many falls.
Pets – walk carefully when your pet is close at hand.They like to be near you, but can easily cause you to fall.Pay attention to your surroundings before walking.
By paying attention to some of these details, perhaps we can reduce the number of falls that we experienced last year.We wish you all a safe and healthy winter