Senior-Friendly Tips to Prevent Falls at Home

Where do falls among older adults occur most frequently? According to data compiled from the National Health Interview Survey, the majority of fall injuries among older people occur inside the home.

On a daily basis, independent seniors over the age of 65 are at risk of falling (a staggering one out of three). According to the CDC, most falls are caused by a combination of risk factors. Some factors like being a pet owner are more difficult to change, while other factors like using corded phones can easily be changed. What really matters is the amount and combination of these factors. A combination of too many risk factors means more potential falls.  

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Conditions that Make You More Likely to Fall

These are the most common risk factors that cause falls in seniors:

  • Lower body weakness
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Difficulties with walking and balance
  • Use of medications with side effects that include dizziness and drowsiness
  • Vision problems
  • Foot pain or poor footwear
  • Home hazards and dangers such as:
    • Broken or uneven steps
    • Throw rugs, clutter, or small pets that can be tripped over
    • No handrails along stairs or in the bathroom
    • No personal emergency response system

What You Can Do to Prevent Falls

How many of these conditions apply to you? The good news is that many falls are preventable by reducing the number of risky conditions. Seniors can take these preventive measures to ensure their safety:

1. Talk to your doctor

  • Ask your doctor to evaluate your risk for falling
  • Review your medications to see if any of them might cause dizziness or drowsiness
  • Have your eyes checked at least once a year
  • Ask your doctor about medical alert systems

2. Take care of your health

  • Improve your balance with strength and balance exercises that make your legs and core stronger. Tai Chi is a great way to start!
  • Take vitamin D supplements with calcium

3. Make your home safer

  • Keep your floors clear of objects you could trip over
  • Keep your home well-lit
  • Get a medical alert system
  • Senior-proof your home by following the tips in the infographic below

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Keeping Seniors Independent

Don’t forget to get regular check-ups. Getting regular check-ups is essential in fall prevention for seniors. Ask your doctor to assess what you should be doing to reduce your fall risk.

On an everyday basis, make sure to get enough of your vitamins. Incorporate mild exercise into your day. And keep a medical alert system by your side. Medical alert systems make sure that you have easy access to help in an emergency. It’s important for independent seniors to be able to age in place, and medical alert systems make it all possible.

Seniors can be independent and stay safe by remembering these golden tips. From making sure cords are tucked away to using bright-colored tape on steps, the more of these tips you use the safer you will be.