By Brittany Butler,2014-09-26 03:51
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    HOME SAFETY: Preventing falls at home

    By making some changes in your home,

    you can reduce your risk of falling.

    ; FLOORS: Look at furniture placement and other items on the floor. o Ask someone to help you move your furniture so that your

    path from room to room is clear. Remove any unnecessary


o Remove throw rugs. They are a tripping hazard.

    o Check the carpet on your floor and stairs for tears or ridges.

    These should be repaired to ensure a smooth surface.

    o Check for uneven surfaces between flooring areas, where

    carpet meets tile, or for metal strips between rooms. If there

    is a potential for tripping, ask a flooring contractor for options

    for smoothing the area.

    o Keep items such as shoes, books, papers, magazines, boxes,

    towels, and clothing off the floor and stairs.

    o Keep electrical and telephone cords out of walkways and

    doorways. They should be hidden behind furniture or against



    o Some bathtubs and showers come with non-slip surfaces on

    the “floor.” If yours does not, place a non-slip rubber mat on

    the floor of your tub or shower, or install self-stick strips.

    o Have a contractor/carpenter install grab bars inside the tubs

    and showers and next to the toilet.

    o If you use bath rugs, make sure they are rubber-backed and

    do not slip. Use double-sided tape to secure the edges to the


    o Place a shower caddy at chest-height to avoid bending over to

    pick up items from the shower floor or the edge of the tub.

    o Wipe up spilled water immediately using a chamois cloth.

    o Place padding on any sharp edges of counters and bathroom



    o Place a lamp close to the bed where it’s easy to reach from the

    bed. Turn the light on before getting out of bed.

    o Make sure the height of your bed allows both feet to rest flat

    on the floor when you sit squarely on the mattress.

    o Light your path from the bedroom to the bathroom. Use a

    bright night-light, or leave a light on so that you can see

    where you are walking.

    ; KITCHEN:

    o Keep items you use most often within arm’s reach, at waist

    level or higher.

    o Bending down to retrieve an item from a low shelf, then

    standing up quickly, can make you dizzy.

    o Consider using a reacher/grabber to pick up low items and to

    lift down small items placed high.

    o If you must use a step stool, get one with a bar to hold on to.

    Make sure the stool is level and sturdy. Avoid using chairs or

    other objects as step stools.

o Wipe spills immediately.

    ; STAIRS and STEPS:

    o Install handrails on both sides of stairs. If handrails are

    present, make sure they are not loose or broken.

    o If there is not a light that illuminates your entire stairway,

    have one installed by an electrician. If a light is present, use

    the highest-wattage bulb that the fixture will allow.

    o Make sure existing carpet is attached securely to every step. o If your home has a second floor or a basement, limit your use

    of the stairs. Determine whether you can live on one floor. If

    your bedroom is upstairs, is there a room on the main floor

    that you can convert to a bedroom?

    ; GENERAL:

    o Always stand up slowly. Make sure you are balanced, and not

    dizzy, before taking any steps.

    o Wear sturdy shoes with low, non-skid soles both inside and

    outside the house. Avoid slippers, sandals, socks, and bare


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