Be Safe at Home
Most falls occur at home. Stay safe and independent in your home by following these simple suggestions.
Keep Your Path Clear
- Move books, boxes, shoes and clutter out of your path and off stairs.
- Move extension, appliance and telephone cords that you can trip over.
- Watch where your pets are sleeping or lying down.
- Rearrange furniture to allow a clear path. If the furniture is heavy, ask for help
Don't Give Your Feet a Reason to Trip
- Put away those throw and scatter rugs!
- Apply double-sided tape to the back of carpet to keep it from moving. Double-sided tape costs $3 to $7 at a hardware or discount store.
- Take your time when getting to the phone or to answer the door. Rushing may cause you to trip and fall.
- When walking up and down stairs, take your time and use the handrail.
Brighten Up Your Apartment or House
- Turn the lights on as you move through the house and up and down the stairs.
- Use nightlights to brighten bedrooms, halls and bathrooms.
- Have a lamp or flashlight and your glasses within easy reach of your bed.
- Keep a small flashlight on your keychain. A keychain flashlight costs $2 to $10 at a discount store or sporting goods store.
- When spending the night away from home, take along a flashlight so when you wake up in an unfamiliar room you can find your way to the bathroom.
Keep Your Bathroom Fall Free
- Use a non-slip mat in the tub or shower. Non-slip mats cost $5 to $7 at a hardware store, discount store or medical supply store.
- Use a bath bench or shower stool. These items cost $21 to $30 at a discount store, medical supply store, or ask for help ordering one on-line.
- Install a grab bar next to the toilet and in the bathtub or shower. A towel rack doesn’t work – it can pull out of the wall. Call the Senior LinkAge Line® (1-800-333-2433) to find a professional who installs grab bars.
Complete a home safety checklist. It is a simple step to make your home safe and fall proof.
- Check for Safety: A Home Fall Prevention Checklist for Older Adults is available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, visit http://www.cdc.gov/HomeandRecreationalSafety/Falls/pubs.html
- Fall Prevention Home Safety Checklist is available from the Minnesota Safety Council, visit www.minnesotasafetycouncil.org/SeniorSafe or call 1-800-444-9150
- Obtain Tools You Can Use, visit the Fall Prevention Center of Excellence at http://www.stopfalls.org/individuals_families/if_em.shtml
Learn about the Lifetime Home Project at http://www.lifetimehome.us.