Avoiding Falls

Home Safety is one of those things that seems simple, but when it comes to drilling handrails into walls or rearranging our parents' furniture, it can get pretty emotional. But as a caregiver, it’s natural to try to prevent bad things from happening, and that starts with avoiding falls. Falls are the **number one** cause of serious injuries for seniors and most falls happen in the home 

The Most Important Stuff

1. Bathroom Grab Bars

Bathrooms are the most dangerous rooms in the house for seniors, especially if your loved one has to step over a ledge to get into the tub or shower. The best grab bars are permanently bolted to wall studs, have grippy surfaces, and are placed where your loved one would naturally reach out if they're starting to slip. Bars should also be positioned by the toilet.

2. Non-slip Mats or Decals 

Along with the bars, slippery floors in the bathroom and in the tub or shower can be made a lot safer with rubber mats or with grippy stick-on decals. You can also add decals to the inside of metal grab bars to help with gripping.

3. Brighter Lights

As we age, we have a much harder time seeing in low light. Replacing your loved one's lights with brighter bulbs can make a huge difference in reducing falls. We really love the new generation of LED bulbs which give out a lot more light while using less energy.

4. Check Handrails and Stairs
Make sure existing hand rails are in good shape and at the right height. Install new rails if they are missing and if possible, install rails on both sides. Stairs can be uneven and poorly lit, so keep stairs clear and fix any loose runners or wobbly steps. You can also add stick on runners to hardwood steps

5. Remove Tripping Hazards
Throw rugs, electrical cords, or anything that sticks up or out should be rearranged. 

90% of home safety is common sense: take some time to look around loved one's house, watch as they do their usual routines and look for ways to reduce the chances of a fall.