Family members, friends, and senior care assistants can help the elderly person reduce their risk of slipping and falling. Here are 10 common causes of slip and fall accidents in the elderly and what can be done about them.
1. Wet Surfaces
Most slip and fall accidents for elderly adults happen in the bathroom and in the kitchen because they usually have hard surfaces that often get wet. Slippery floors are dangerous for any age, but especially for seniors who don’t have quick reflexes anymore.
2. Uneven Surfaces
Doorway thresholds, rugs and changing from carpet to a hard surface can present elderly adults with an uneven surface. While they may seem small, it doesn’t take much to catch the bottom of a shoe or foot to trigger a slip and fall accident.
3. Weather conditions
Rain, snow, and ice can wreak havoc on the flooring at entrances and exits to an elderly person’s home. Also, areas like the patio, porch, sidewalk, and driveway can also be adversely affected by the elements. Beware of indoor patches of melting snow or dripping water from clothes and shoes.
4. Improper use of walking aids
While walkers and canes are a big help in preventing slip and fall accidents, they can also become a hindrance when used improperly. Some common problems include not lifting the walker high enough or moving it forward enough, dragging the cane and hitting obstacles.
Ill-fitting shoes can cause seniors to trip over the smallest things or simply snag their foot on a flat surface. Family caregivers and senior care assistants need to make sure their shoes fit right and are properly secured. Also, footwear such as slippers, flip-flops and slides can cause elderly adults to stumble.
6. Physical conditions
Sometimes elderly adults have something going on that makes them dizzy or lightheaded. Common ailments like dehydration, a cold, vertigo, high blood pressure and medication side effects can all make an elderly person less steady on their feet.
7. Improper floor maintenance
When a walkway is uneven or needs to be maintained, it can be hazardous. Loose tile, warped floorboards, worn carpet and peeling vinyl must all be taken care of immediately to avoid a fall. Cleaning products can also leave floors sticky or slippery.
Garbage, clothing, newspapers, pet toys and more can quickly get in the way around the house. Unfortunately, clutter is a key contributor toward a slip and fall accident. Family caregivers, senior care aides and elderly people need to keep things tidy so that there are no challenges to getting around.
Navigating the stairs proves to be a big challenge for many seniors, especially those with walkers and canes. Sturdy handrails can help elderly adults navigate the stairs. The best advice for seniors and stairs is to take it slow and use handrails.
10. Poor visibility
Many seniors develop poor eyesight as they age, making it harder to navigate walkways in the home. Good lighting is one of the best things that family members can do to give elderly relatives the ability to see where they are going and avoid obstacles.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Health Care in Broomall, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Suma Home Care. Call today: 484-200-7347