Preventing Falls in Older Adults
When seniors are living in their own home, the biggest danger they typically face is falling. One out of every three people over age 65 has a serious fall each year. In people 75 and older, those falls frequently result in the person’s needing full-time caregivers or being forced to leave their home and move into a long-term care facility. In some cases, these falls can even be deadly – particularly if the individual breaks a hip.
With this in mind, seniors can significantly reduce their risk of falling by taking a few basic precautions, say the staff at McCortney Family Hospice and McCortney Family In-Home Care:
- Stay mobile. If your doctor gives you the okay, do regular exercises and stretching that will focus on increasing your leg strength and improving balance. Many of these exercises can be done from either a sitting or standing position.
- Review your medications. Taking four or more medications puts you at a much higher risk for falls. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to review all of the prescription and over-the-counter medications you take, to see if any can be eliminated.
- Use assistive devices like canes, walkers, rollators and wheelchairs, as needed.
- Boost the lighting in your home. Poor lighting makes it easier to trip.
- Wear shoes with non-skid soles, especially if you have linoleum or wooden floors.
- Avoid slippery throw rugs, and eliminate clutter that may be blocking your path.
- Install grab bars in the bathroom, along stairways, and in other parts of your home as needed.
- Get an eye exam regularly, and make sure your glasses prescription is up to date.
- Consider hiring part-time or full-time in-home caregivers, such as those with McCortney In-Home Care, to assist you in getting around and provide other assistance.
- If your loved one is falling, and you need assistance or advice, call McCortney Family In-Home Care’s office in Ada, OK, at 580-427-2273.