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The Ultimate Guide To Fall Prevention At Home

June 28, 2021 4 min read

Falls are the leading cause of death, injuries and hospital admissions among the elderly. Every year, one in three seniors suffer a fall and most of them happen at home. Therefore, it is crucial to learn more about how to fall-proof your homes in order to protect your elderly loved ones.

This guide will teach you how to fall proof the 3 key areas of your house:

  1. Bathroom
  2. Bedroom
  3. Living Room

1. Bathroom

The slippery surfaces and hard edges of bathrooms make them one of the most dangerous places at home for seniors. From moving around the shower area to using the toilet, these day-to-day activities can become very stressful to caregivers and the elderly. Here are some areas you should look out for:

a. Install or create non-slip flooring

Anti-slip bath mats or Anti-slip bath floor adhesives can be placed on the floor or shower area to prevent slips. These items are waterproof and have textured surfaces that provide more friction and prevent slips.

b. Consider placing a shower chair in the shower area

Shower Chairs give the elderly a place to sit while bathing, preventing falls.

c. Install grab bars on walls

Grab bars provide extra handle support for seniors to hold onto when they use the bathroom. Some areas you should consider installing the grab bars are beside the toilet bowl, in the shower area and next to the door frame especially if there is a step at the entrance of the doorway (common in older HDB flats).

Grab bars come in different colours, lengths and shapes that can easily fit the aesthetic of your bathroom. For extra protection, consider purchasing grab bars with an anti-slip or textured surface for a better grip such as our HappyBath Stainless Steel Nylon Grab Bar.

d. Less mobile users can consider using a commode

Commodes allow the elderly to be wheeled over the toilet bowl so they do not have to get up to use the toilet. This is especially important for seniors who are less mobile. Some commodes such as the HappyBath 3-in-1 Deluxe Aluminium Commode Chair and the ShowerBuddy Roll-In Buddy Lite Commode even have a 3-in-1 function: an indoor wheelchair, commode, and shower chair.

2. Bedroom

a. Add a night light beside the bed

In general, ensure that your homes are properly and adequately lit. Especially for seniors whose eyesight is deteriorating, dim lights at home can cause misjudgement in their movement. Having nightlights beside the bed can help the elderly see their walking path if they need to get up at night to go to the kitchen or toilet.

b. Choose the right type of mattress and bed

Concave mattresses can help to minimize the chances of someone rolling out of bed while flat mattresses make getting out of bed much easier. The optimal height of the bed is at knee level so the elderly can easily get in and out of bed. Consider purchasing the height adjustable Rakusho Z Series Homecare Bed designed to increase the comfort of users and bring convenience to caregivers.

c. Install a bed rail

Bed rails provide the elderly with extra support to help them get in and out of bed easily and independently. Additionally, they are much more economical and pleasing than hospital beds. Some bed rails such as the Stander EZ Adjust Bed Rail are designed specifically for fall prevention, whereby it prevents the elderly from rolling off the bed at night.

d. Consider having a wearable medical alert device

The Elderly Wireless SOS Alarm Pager is an easy way for the elderly to immediately alert caregivers when help or an emergency such as a fall occurs. This allows caregivers to immediately attend to them.

e. Ensure adequate support for getting dressed

Getting dressed is one of the daily tasks that can easily cause falls. Consider placing a chair in the bedroom so the elderly can be seated while they get dressed. Sturdy but comfortable chairs like the Utility Chair with Low-Back are a great option to help ensure stability.

3. Living room

a. Remove clutter and obstacles

Clutter such as excess furniture serves as tripping hazards for the elderly. Make sure to remove them and clear out the pathway to prevent falls.

b. Ensure that your sofa is not too soft or low

This enables the elderly to easily get up from the sofa while at the same time ensuring their comfort. However, if additional support is needed, consider purchasing sofa accessories such as the Stander EZ Stand-N-Go and Stander Assist-A-Tray to make standing and sitting easy and safe.

c. Use mobility aids around the house

Mobility devices such as walkers and canes can be used for extra support both indoors and outdoors for seniors with unstable balance. Consider purchasing the Stander EZ Fold-N-Go Walker that has rear ski gliders that would not scratch the floor, making it a suitable device to use around the house.

d. For long sittings, consider a geriatric chair

For the weaker elderly that are constantly sitting down, having a relaxing chair such as the Vermeiren Normandie Luxury Relax Geriatric Chair can help to bring them a lot more comfort. Its reclinable backrest, adjustable footrest and armrest can help to ensure that they are in the right position and ready to get up when needed.

 

To make things simple for you, we have compiled a checklist on tips and suggestions to fall-proof your homes.


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