Risks of Falls Around the Home
It’s a difficult task to watch our loved ones age and have trouble walking and moving around the house. After all, these were simple actions that once required very little energy to do. Now it may be a difficult job for your elderly loved one. Even worse when various obstacles are present throughout the home that can pose a potential risk for your loved one to trip over. As they get older, their bones and body become more sensitive, meaning a fall could result in serious damages. This is why it is important to recognize the various risks, learn how to prevent them, and improve the safety around the home.
Recognizing Risks of Falls
You may notice that there are certain things — such as getting out of a chair or bed — that become more difficult for your elderly loved one to do. Unfortunately, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports, one in every three adults over the age of 65 fall for one reason or another. In addition, two million of these elderly individuals are treated in the emergency room for injuries related to falls. If you notice your loved one struggling to take a shower, maneuver around the home, or get out of bed, you may need to make some adjustments in lifestyle and around the house.
Helping to Prevent Falls
Before your elderly loved one even reaches the point of a potential fall, you can work with them to help find ways to prevent the event from happening. There are certain things you can have them do that can strengthen their bodies, increase their awareness, and keep their focus on potential dangers. First, encourage your loved one to get up often; move around and stretch. This keeps their body from growing fatigued and weakening to the point where a fall is possible. Increase the strength and balance as much as possible.
You can also help them by getting their vision checked so they can see the things that may be in their way. As individuals get older, they may need glasses to correct blurred vision or to help with depth perception; both issues that can cause them to fall or trip over an object. Also, check your loved one’s medications. Sometimes, when used together, a combination of medications can have adverse side effects on a person that can often include dizziness or fatigue. Before your loved one takes medication, make sure you consult with the doctor or pharmacist so you fully understand drug interactions and potential side effects. Finally, you can eliminate safety hazards and provide aids for your loved one.
Increasing the Safety of the Home
There are common things around the home that could cause your elderly loved one to fall such as slippery floors, steep stairs, high steps, or bad lighting. Luckily, there are steps you can take to help improve the safety of the home for your elderly loved one. Here are some tips you should consider:
- Make sure your stairs have bright lights and handrails so your loved one can see where they are stepping and have assistance getting their feet up.
- Add in grab bars and non-slip mats in the shower. Not only will it help them get over the side of the tub to get in, but they can use both while taking a shower to avoid losing balance.
- If your loved one has specific items they always use, make sure they’re in a location that your loved one can reach without struggling or using a stool.
- Clean floors and remove any other dangerous items — such as rugs — that may cause your loved one to trip.
Taking the necessary steps to protect your loved one is important. However, at At Home Healthcare, we recognize the fact that this can be difficult to do. You may not be able to completely predict when a fall will occur or completely prevent it, but you can definitely seek help to provide your loved one with the care they need.
At Home Healthcare, provides in-home adult care services throughout Texas and have experience helping seniors who may have trouble getting up or walking around. We take the necessary time each visit to work with your loved one and provide the care and services they require. You can trust our team to treat your loved one with the respect they deserve and go the extra mile to protect them from falls.
Call us today and learn how we may be able to help you.