By Flagship Rehabilitation

In support of Falls Prevention Awareness Week, September 21-25, 2020, our partners at Flagship Rehabilitation offer the following article on how to prevent falls.

There are many steps you can take to reduce the risk of falls. Here are some tips to follow as general guidelines. It is important for you to discuss any specific concerns you have with your doctor or other health care provider.

Stay Healthy

  • Review your medications with your doctor and/or pharmacist on a regular basis. Always bring a list of all the medications you are taking whether prescription, over the counter, vitamins, or herbal supplements to every doctor’s appointment.
  • Have your eyes checked at least once a year or if you notice a change in your vision.
  • Speak to your doctor if you are experiencing dizziness or unsteadiness.
  • Make sure you are getting enough to eat and drink every day.

Exercise Regularly

  • Exercise will increase your strength and flexibility. It will also improve your balance and coordination.
  • Talk to your physician or other healthcare provider before you start an exercise program.

Check the Lighting in Your Home

  • Use good lighting throughout your home. Frosted bulbs or lamp shades will help to reduce glare.
  • Use night lights to avoid sudden changes in light. This will help if you need to get up during the night.

Keep Your Home Orderly

  • Eliminate clutter and things you can trip over from areas where you walk.
  • Arrange countertops, closets, cupboards and other storage areas so regularly used items are easily accessible.  
  • Eliminate throw rugs or make sure they are secured with double-sided tape.

Use Equipment Designed to Keep You Safe

  • Have grab bars installed in your tub or shower and next to your toilet.
  • Use non-slip mats in the tub or shower.
  • Use a tub seat if needed. Dry off before stepping out of the tub or shower.
  • If you need a device to assist with walking, make sure it is in good repair and you are using it correctly and consistently.
  • Install handrails on all steps or staircases.

General Reminders

  • Get up slowly after sitting or lying down.
  • Know your capabilities and limitations.
  • Wear shoes with good support and non-slip soles.
  • Keep a portable phone and important phone numbers close by.
  • Plan ahead – know what to do if you fall.