How To Fall Proof A Home For Elderly. As life spans grow longer, and technology makes it possible to live independently longer, the number of seniors living alone increases steadily. It is important to understand how to fall proof a home for elderly so they are safe and secure in their homes as they age in place. This article will help you understand how to fall proof a home by providing you with steps on what you can do and what you can buy that will prevent serious injury or death if someone falls in your home.
How To Fall Proof A Home For Elderly
According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries for seniors. falls can cause hip fractures, broken bones, and head injuries. Fall prevention is important for keeping seniors safe and independent. There are many things that can be done to fall proof a home, such as following fall prevention guidelines from the CDC and implementing fall prevention strategies. By taking these precautions, we can help reduce the number of falls among seniors.
The CDC offers several guidelines for fall prevention. If you are an elder living alone, it is a good idea to make sure your home meets these fall prevention guidelines. They suggest installing handrails on both sides of stairs, making sure walls and floors are clear of clutter, keeping entrances well lit, and making your home safe by using non-slip mats in bathtubs and showers. Fall prevention strategies at home can also be beneficial. These are more practical strategies for helping seniors live independently longer.
Here are other tips for fall prevention strategies at home: Replace light bulbs with energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs, Switch to low-maintenance flooring such as tile or wood, Remove tripping hazards from your yard, Replace broken doorknobs and faucets, Install grab bars in showers and toilets, and Make sure your senior loved one gets adequate exercise every day. By using these strategies at home, we can help reduce falls among seniors.
2. Choose Walking Areas Wisely
When it comes to choosing walking areas, elderly adults should be aware of the following CDC fall prevention guidelines:
– Look for well-lit areas that are free of obstacles.
– Avoid using slippery or uneven surfaces.
– Wear shoes that fit well and provide good support.
– Use canes or walkers if needed.
– Keep your home clean and free of clutter to reduce the risk of trip hazards.
3. Move Kitchen Cabinets Away From The Wall
One way to fall proof your home is to move your kitchen cabinets away from the wall. This may seem like a counterintuitive design choice, but it can actually help prevent falls. According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of injury for adults aged 65 and older. By moving your cabinets away from the wall, you create a clear path around the kitchen so that there are no obstacles in the way if someone needs to walk through quickly.
Remove Non-Slip Rugs And Thresholds: Your kitchen may also have non-slip rugs that stick to your floor. If a person with limited mobility were to fall, these rugs can get stuck under their feet and trip them further. The same is true of thresholds that are too low; if someone were to slip, they might fall into a lower level because of it. Move non-slip rugs and replace thresholds with ones that are higher up or removable.
READ: 10 Fall Prevention Strategies At Home
4. Get Rid Of Stairs
The first step to fall proofing your home is to get rid of any stairs. If your home has more than one level, consider installing a chair lift. If this is not possible, then make sure there is always someone available to help your elderly loved one up and down the stairs.
In addition to getting rid of stairs, another important fall prevention strategy is to install handrails in all hallways and bathrooms. CDC fall prevention guidelines also suggest keeping mats on the floor next to toilets or tubs, as well as making sure that all electrical cords are out of reach from where you will be walking. You should also install motion sensors near beds and chairs, so that if you start to fall it automatically turns on lights for you or sends an emergency call for help.
5. Decide on a Safety Belt
As we age, our bodies change and we become more susceptible to falls. The CDC estimates that one in four Americans aged 65+ falls each year. Falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries for seniors, so it’s important to take steps to fall-proof your home.
When thinking about safety belts, most people think of them as something used in cars. There are actually several types of safety belts that can be purchased and installed at home to prevent falls. The right belt depends on your needs and preferences, but each type offers unique benefits that may be more or less suitable for you.
If you or an aging loved one live in a house that does not have rails on stairs, grab bars in bathrooms, and secure handrails along halls, it is time to think about fall prevention. Purchasing and installing home safety belts is a simple way to help prevent falls at home.
With so many options available, it can be difficult to know which type of belt to choose. Here’s a rundown of different types of home safety belts and when they’re most effective. These types of belts are often inexpensive, lightweight, and easy to install. They will not disrupt the decor in your home either! Consider what type of belt would work best for you, then do some research to find out where you can purchase the best model in your price range. You’ll be glad you did!
READ: Home Safety For Dementia Patients; 10 Very Important Tips To Follow
6. Use Anti-Slip Carpeting or Mats in Bathrooms and Stairways
One of the best ways to fall proof a home is to use anti-slip carpeting or mats in bathrooms and stairways. This will help create a more stable surface for elders to walk on, reducing the risk of slips and falls. Carpeting can also be used in other areas of the home, such as the kitchen, to provide extra traction. In addition to using anti-slip materials, other fall prevention strategies at home include installing handrails, removing tripping hazards, and improving lighting.
7. Consider Safety Fittings For Shower Doors and Door Handles
As we age, our bodies become more fragile and susceptible to injury. According to the CDC, falls are the leading cause of both fatal and non-fatal injuries for seniors.
One thing you should consider is safety fittings for shower doors and door handles. Doors should have locks that require only one hand to open, be at least 36 inches wide, and have no threshold or lip at the bottom. Make sure staircases are well lit with handrails on both sides. Install grab bars in bathrooms or near sinks. Consider safety fittings for shower doors and door handles, too!
Each of these safety fittings for shower doors and door handles will help prevent falls in your elderly loved one’s home. After all, a fall is a disaster you don’t want to have to deal with!
8. Keep First Aid Kit Handy at All Times
While no fall prevention plan is 100% effective, a number of measures can reduce your risk. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) recommends keeping first aid supplies in an easily accessible place, such as next to your front door or in your bathroom medicine cabinet.
These supplies should include bandages, gauze pads, medical tape, and any over-the-counter medications you’ll need. It’s also a good idea to keep nonperishable foods on hand so that if someone has an injury that prevents them from leaving their home, they won’t have to worry about going hungry.