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10 Steps to Avoid Falls

40% of all falls are preventable!

1. Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Use a cane or walker if it has been prescribed. Walk slowly and if you don’t feel well, ask someone to help you.

2. Get Plenty of Rest, Proper Nutrition, and Hydration 
After the age of 65, 6 out of 10 visits a person will make to a hospital emergency room are a result of a fall in or around the home. (Consumer Product Safety Council)

3. Simplify 
Make your environment safer. Get rid of anything that could make you trip and fall. These can include clutter, excess furniture, etc. Arrange furniture so you have a clear pathway between rooms. Remove low coffee tables, magazine racks, footstools, and plants from pathways.

4. Avoid Trip-Ups 
Remove floor hazards such as area rugs, extension cords, and/or other things that can create obstacles in your path.

5. Clearance 
Make sure you have 36 inches to 42 inches clearance in your walking path.

6. Hold On 
Hold on to steady furniture if you are unsteady on your feet.

7. Pay Attention
Pay close attention to the FALL trouble spots. Be aware that 45% of all household injuries take place in the bathroom and 20% take place in the kitchen. Avoid falls by equipping these areas with grab bars near sinks, toilets, and showers. Wear safe footwear. Make sure that the soles of your hoes are not worn since they can cause you to slip. If you wear slippers around the house, make sure they have rubber soles.

8. Exercise 
Ask your primary care physician or discharge planner to prescribe an appropriate exercise plan for you to help improve balance, gait, and muscle tone.

9. Lights 
Keep your home well lit. A dark home is a dangerous home. Make sure that all of the areas you walk in are illuminated at all times of the day and evening. Pay extra attention to areas where you frequently walk through like pathways to and from the bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen. Keep a flashlight handy at all times in case the power fails.

10. Medication 
Take medications as directed, on time, and only the dosage prescribed. Do not skip
medications. Report any side effects or negative reactions you experience to your primary care physician. Remember, failure to properly take medication is a major cause of alls and fall related injuries. Follow the simple advice on the next page to improve compliance.