Falls are incredibly damaging for anyone. A wrong move could lead to severe injuries and a damaged ego for most kids and adults. However, falls are explicitly challenging for seniors, as the National Council on Aging suggests that falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries for people over 65 years old.
It makes sense that most seniors and their loved ones want to protect themselves from a slip, trip or fall. But how do we secure the safety of these older adults? Luckily, there are simple ways to prevent falls for you or your loved ones.
Start a discussion
An excellent first step is to have a conversation with family members or friends surrounding health conditions and falling. If you are at risk for a fall, ask your children or relatives to help make your home safer or check in on you once a day. If you are concerned about a parent, you may want to ask about health conditions that result in higher risks for falls.
Analyze the medications
After your conversation, take some time to look through your medications. Most medications likely result in serious side effects, including fatigue, dizziness, loss of balance and low vision.
You or a relative could review your current prescriptions and decide what could need updates with a medical professional. Also, if you rely on non-prescribed sleeping pills, you may want to ask your doctor for a safer alternative since those pills tend to cause more symptoms.
Conduct a safety assessment of your home
An important step is to conduct a walk-through of your home. It allows you to anticipate any hazards in the bathroom, stairs and even the lighting. Some easy ways to make your home safer is to add rails to the stairs, install grab bars in showers or bathtubs and increase lighting throughout the house to help visibility.
These are three simple steps to create a safer environment for yourself or loved ones, but it won’t guarantee zero falls. You may slip and fall in public space or in a business, so make sure to seek proper compensation to cover medical expenses.