Falls are the leading cause of hospitalization among older adults, so it makes sense to try and avoid them. Whether you are at risk of falling now or you are planning for the future, there are steps you can take to increase the safety of your home.
This is an area where you may spend a lot of your time. After all, it is the heart of the home, right? Make it user-friendly to lower your chance of having a serious fall or accident here. Have a family member or friend help you move the most frequently used items to lower shelves so you don’t have to climb or reach to get them out. Use a grabber tool to help you get things you can’t quite reach on your own.
You may not spend as much time in the bathroom as other areas, but it can be a serious fall hazard if not properly designed. There are great features that help improve accessibility and stability in today’s bathrooms. If you have the resources, consider a renovation that includes a walk-in shower or tub, a wheelchair accessible sink, and sturdy grab bars.
When you struggle to get around, long hallways can seem to stretch on for an eternity. You can make them a little nicer by keeping halls free from clutter and area rugs. They both present a trip hazard and can cause a walker or wheelchair to get hung up and stuck.
You probably spend about a third of each day in this room, so why not make it as safe as possible? Beds that are low to the ground make getting in and out of them easier. Consider a platform or adjustable base that is compatible with your current mattress to save on the cost of a new one. Keep a light in your room that can be easily turned on for nighttime trips to the bathroom, too. Stumbling half-asleep through the dark is a sure way to increase your chances of a fall.
From simply removing clutter to complete renovations, there are plenty of options for making your home a safer place to live. Thinking ahead and planning for limited mobility can make it easier.