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How to Prevent a Fall in Your Home

Jul 7, 2016 - Slip and Fall by

How to Fall-Proof Your HomeThe American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says that 11 million people over the age of 65 suffer a fall every year, resulting in $20 billion in fall-associated healthcare costs.

The AAOS has provided room-by-room safety tips for fall-proofing your home:

Bedroom

  • Place a lamp, telephone and flashlight near your bed.
  • Sleep on a bed that is easy to get into and out of.
  • Replace satiny sheets and comforter with products made of non-slip material; i.e., wool, cotton.
  • Arrange clothes in your closet so that they are easy to reach.
  • Install a night-light along the route between your bedroom and the bathroom.
  • Keep clutter off the bedroom floor.

Living Areas

  • Arrange furniture so you have a clear pathway between rooms.
  • Keep low-rise coffee tables, magazine racks, foot rests and plants out of the path of traffic.
  • Install easy-access light switches at entrances to rooms so you won’t have to walk into a darkened room in order to turn on the light. Glow-in-the-dark switches may be helpful.
  • Walk only in well-lighted rooms, stairs and halls.
  • Do not store boxes near doorways or in hallways.
  • Remove newspapers and all clutter from pathways.
  • Keep cords out of walkways, but don’t put cords under a rug.
  • Don’t run extension cords across pathways; rearrange furniture.
  • Secure loose area rugs with double-faced tape, tacks, or slip-resistant backing.
  • Don’t sit in a chair or on a sofa that is so low it is difficult to stand up.
  • Repair loose wooden floorboards right away.
  • Remove doorsills higher than 1/2″ inch.

Kitchen

  • Remove throw rugs.
  • Immediately clean up any liquids, grease, or food spilled on the floor.
  • Store food, dishes, and cooking equipment within easy reach.
  • Don’t stand on chairs or boxes to reach upper cabinets.
  • Use nonskid floor wax.

Stairs and Steps

  • Keep stairs clear of packages, boxes or clutter.
  • Light switches should be at the top and bottom of the stairs. Or consider installing motion-detector lights that turn on automatically.
  • Provide enough light to see each stair and the top and bottom landings.
  • Keep flashlights nearby in case of a power outage.
  • Remove loose area rugs from the bottom or top of stairs.
  • Replace patterned, dark or deep-pile carpeting with a solid color, which will show the edges of steps more clearly.
  • Put non-slip treads on each bare wood step.
  • Install handrails on both sides of the stairway. Each should be 30 inches above the stairs and extend the full length of the stairs.
  • Repair loose stairway carpeting or wooden boards immediately.

Bathroom

  • Place a slip-resistant rug adjacent to the bathtub for safe exit and entry.
  • Mount a liquid soap dispenser on the bathtub/shower wall.
  • Install grab bars on the bathroom walls.
  • Keep a night-light in the bathroom.
  • Use a rubber mat or place nonskid adhesive textured strips on the tub.
  • Replace glass shower enclosures with non-shattering material.
  • Stabilize yourself on the toilet by using either a raised seat or a special toilet seat with armrests.
  • Use a sturdy, plastic seat in the bathtub if you cannot lower yourself to the floor of the tub or if you are unsteady.

The attorneys of Roberts & Roberts have the skill, experience and resources to fully investigate any serious accident or death.  If you have a question about an accident involving a serious injury or fatality, please call 800-248-6000 or contact us for a free consultation.

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