At home, falls happen too often. More than one in four people over the age of 65 will fall in a given year, and only half of those people tell someone when a fall happens. When a person falls once, it doubles his or her chances of a second fall.
As you age, or if you have an elderly loved on in your home, it’s important to know and eliminate fall hazards. Our AFC Urgent Care Gastonia team highlights some common ones to be on the lookout for below, so keep reading!
- Here’s what to do: Secure throw rugs. Throw rugs are one of the biggest fall culprits, as they have a tendency to bunch up. While the safest option is not to use them, rugs are common in most homes. Consider putting rubber gripping under your rugs to make them safer.
- What to do next: Reduce clutter. Clutter in the floor greatly increases the risk of falling. When you get something out, or if you have cords or wires in often-used walking paths, put them away. Keeping things clean and tidy will greatly reduce the amount of objects you could trip and fall over.
- What to do after: Improve lighting. A dimly lit home increases the chances of tripping and falling. Keeping the home too bright is also a problem because it may create a glare. A good rule of thumb is to keep the home well-lit but not overly lit.
- Another hazard to eliminate: Unstable chairs or sofas. We all have one piece of furniture that’s a little suspect. Make sure that any chair or sofa you sit in has adequate support.
- A good habit to maintain: Wear footwear that has some grip. Slippery socks and slippers can cause falls, so consider wearing shoes or socks with rubber grips on the bottom to reduce your fall risk.
- If a fall does happen: Call your doctor or a loved one, or if you’re hurt, call 911. Statistics show that falling once doubles your chances of falling again, and telling someone about your first fall can prevent a second fall from happening.
- Action steps to take: If you or a loved one is experiencing swelling or deep bruising after a fall, it’s possible to have broken a bone. Visit our AFC center for an X-ray to get an accurate diagnosis to get set on the correct path to recovery.
- Doctor recommendations: Maintain an active lifestyle! Being sedentary will weaken your body and reduce flexibility, which can make you more susceptible to falls. Exercising consistently will greatly lower your fall-risk and help you reach optimal health.
We’re here for you now and always! Call for an appointment or stop by our AFC center today.