There are many things in the average home that can increase your risk of falling. Read on to learn how you can adapt your home to reduce risks.
Remove Throw Rugs
Throw rugs can cause you to catch your toe and fall. While you may think taping down the rugs will reduce this risk, it doesn’t help all that much. In some rooms where it’s necessary to have a rug (such as a bathroom), try using it only when you are bathing.
Opt For Thinner Carpet
If you want to have carpet in your home but reduce your risk of falling, you should consider installing thinner variants. A thin carpet is similar to walking on a hard floor. Thick carpet can cause wobbling in the ankles, which can throw off the balance of older adults.
Remove Cords and Clutter
Electrical cords pose a sufficient risk to older adults. While you may think you won’t ever trip on one, it is best to move any cords against a wall. You should also store unused items away so you have less risk of tripping on them. Store them at waist level, as reaching up and tipping your head back to see them can cause you to lose your balance more readily.
Turn Lights On In the Hallways
Make sure there is ample lighting when you walk along your hallway and up and down your stairs. Many falls occur at night due to inadequate light. Not being able to see each step you’re walking on can be incredibly dangerous, and the use of nightlights may not be sufficient.
Avoid Using Stepladders And Stools
You should always avoid using stools and stepladders as they can negatively affect your balance as an older adult. Get some help from a family member or friend and arrange your belongings at waist level so you will never need to rely on a stool to reach the desired items. If you must use one, make sure it is anti-slip and has a handrail.
Handrails are permanent fixtures that are primarily installed in bathrooms. These will help prevent falls when you get in and out of the bathtub or shower, and help you maneuver safely around the room.
Check Your Bed and Chair Heights
The ideal height for your beds and chairs is approximately one inch lower than your hips when you are sitting. Armrests will help assist you in sitting down and getting up. The average height is 18” to 20”. If your living room consists of chairs much lower than this, it would be wise to invest in the “right-height” furniture.