Falls are particularly dangerous for senior adults as they can lead to broken bones, fractures and disabilities, depending on severity. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths among adults above 65 years in Florida and most parts of America. Falls in older adults occur due to physical conditions, medical issues, community ecology, and safety hazards in the house. That’s why it’s essential to make a few modifications to improve safety in their living environment. If you’re a senior who lives alone, you can seek help from caregivers at Advancare, who will take care of you and ensure you live safely and comfortably in your home.
What Causes Seniors to Fall
Anyone can fall regardless of age. Unfortunately, falls are more frequent in older adults and can cause severe injuries. While most falls are accidental, some are not. Multiple factors contribute to the risk of falling in seniors. They include:
- Stiff joints and weakening muscles
- Age-related changes like poor eyesight, cognitive loss, slow reaction time, and numbness in the lower limbs
- Poor balance
- Chronic conditions like back pains
- Side effects from medication
- Lack of enough physical activity
- Trips or hazards like floor mats, wet surfaces, or poor lighting
- Not drinking enough water or having a poor diet
- Low calcium levels increase the risk of fractures
- Unsafe shoes
How to Fall-Proof Your Home and Improve Safety
Many older adults prefer to continue living in their homes than live with their adult children or in assisted living communities. However, their homes may not provide the cushion they need at their vulnerable age.
Most seniors also want to do things the same old way and move around as usual without thinking much about their safety. That’s why half of all falls take place at home. However, with a few modifications, you can help your older adult age peacefully, safely, and independently. Here are a few suggestions we thought you should consider.
- Replace all burned-out bulbs with new bright, non-glaring light bulbs
- Place a seat in your bedroom to sit on when dressing up
- Get a shower seat and an adjustable-height handheld showerhead to make bathing easier, safe, and more comfortable
- Clear clutter along the corridors and walkways
- Make sure the beds and seats are sturdy and at a comfortable height for a senior to climb in and out
- Have a bed switch and a flashlight next to your senior’s bed to assist them in case they need to use the bathroom when there is no power
Steps Seniors Can Take to Prevent Falls at Home
Taking care of your overall health is the first step toward living a healthy fall-free life. Here are a few things you can do to reduce your risk of falling.
- Exercise and stay physically active throughout the day
- See your optician for an eye check-up
- Know the side effects of the medicines you take
- Eat a healthy diet full of calcium, vitamin D3, and B12
- Stand up slowly to avoid lowering your blood pressure
- Avoid walking on unsteady or icy surfaces
- Always put on low-heeled, non-skid, rubber-soled, or laced-up shoes
- Use an assistive device to keep you steady as you walk
- Always see a doctor every time you fall, even if you feel okay
- Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated
Let us help You Fall-Proof Your Home
At Advancare, we have the right experts to help you live in a safe, comfortable and peaceful environment. Our caregivers are professionally trained to assess your home’s safety and can advise about making changes to prevent falls. Contact us to learn more about fall-proofing.