Catawba County News
Published: September 22, 2022
Happy fall, y’all! While we enjoy the falling of the leaves, falling down can leave a nasty impression! September 18th through 24th is National Fall Prevention week. Falls are a leading cause of significant injury for older adults. Falls can change the quality of life and can even be fatal. Small changes in the home and in habits can help avoid falls and help us keep doing what we want to do!
Fall Prevention Tips
Exercise every day. At some point or another, we are probably all going to fall. When we exercise every day, our body can be more prepared for the fall. Daily exercise should be catered to your ability and does not have to be drastic. Taking a walk to the end of the driveway every day counts. There are many exercises that can be done sitting in a chair. (Google “Chair Exercises” for loads of ideas.) Moving our bodies helps our joints and muscles as well as our overall health. How can you get moving today? ** Before starting an exercise program, check with your healthcare provider.
Take your time! When going somewhere, there is no need to run. Take your time! This is especially important if you know you have balance problems or you are in an unfamiliar place. When you get up in the morning, take your time going from lying to sitting to standing. Give your body time to adjust from sleep to wakefulness.
Keep walkways clear both inside and outside. Be mindful of rugs, steps, pets, toys, etc. Keep an eye out for electrical cords or excess furniture that can cause you to fall. Try to keep clutter to a minimum.
Make sure to have adequate lighting. Adding nightlights in your home and outdoor lighting can decrease the chance of falling. Make sure to light stairwells too!
Your home should accommodate you. Place handrails in the shower or near toilets to help with getting up and down. Bath mats (and any other rugs in the home) should be non-slip.
Know your limitations. If you need glasses, wear them. If you have been prescribed a walking assist device (cane, walker, etc.) use it. If you have a fall alert button, wear it and use it when you need it.
Take a walk around your home to locate any potential hazards. Fix them if you can or find someone that can help you fix them.
If you do fall, call 911 if you think you are hurt or you can’t get up safely.
If you can’t get up, try to keep yourself warm until help gets to you.
For further information or to schedule a fall prevention presentation for a group, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (828) 464-1575.