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Fall Prevention | What if There is a Fall and There’s No One Around to Help?

Whether you’re a caretaker, loved one or a friend of someone who is a senior or disabled, the thought of them sustaining an injury due to falling can be quite stressful. If you’re concerned about your loved ones risk of falling—especially when they’re on their own—you’re not alone. Learn what steps you should take for fall prevention.

Contingency Plans Are a Must for Fall Prevention

Unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee that your client, friend or loved one will never fall. The world is full of proverbial banana peels. Therefore, it’s necessary to be prepared for a fall and have a contingency plan in place. One way to prepare for the possibility of falling is to have an easily accessible way to call for help. Because falls often occur in areas of a home that don’t offer immediate access to a phone—like bathrooms or staircases—it’s a good idea to install an alert system. Having a fall detection system in place could save someone from feeling stranded after they’ve taken a fall.

In addition to installing an medical alert system, it’s a good idea to teach your client, friend or loved one how to fall to avoid injury. If they feel that they’ve lost their balance and are about to take a fall, they should keep their elbows bent, have some give in their arms, protect their head, and try to land on their muscles, not their bones.  Additional measures should be taken after a fall:

  • Remain Still: Depending on the severity of the fall, they may be swelling or bleeding in certain areas, and it’s crucial that they remain still to prevent making matters worse.
  • Self Awareness: They should note where the impact was, where they can feel swelling, and any other additional information that will help EMTs or ER nurses.
  • Identify the Cause: Did they simply slip, or did they fall due to a misplaced or unnecessary object in their home? When they can pinpoint the cause of the fall, it gives you insight into areas of the home that may still be unsafe.

If you know someone who is at risk of falling and does not have a medical alert or fall detection system in their home, see about outfitting them with one of Vital Link’s alert system and help buttons. Our products provide peace of mind and enables individuals to access help 24/7. View our service and product offerings today.


How to Safeguard Your Home to Prevent Falls

While “home” is supposed to be a safe space for everyone, for seniors, it can be a stage for falls and subsequent serious injury. Taking a wrong step could result in a hip fracture, cut, and even a brain injury, and could also be psychologically traumatizing enough to force you to avoid certain areas of your house. Because of this, taking small measures to help diminish the risk of falling at home is a necessity. Read on to learn how you can safeguard your home to prevent falls.

Use Assistance for Stairs

If you live in a house that is more than one-story tall and must access all levels of your home, make sure to equip your stairs with nonslip treads and handrails for both sides of your stairway. This assistive equipment will make the trek up and down the stairs more manageable and safer.

Move Cords Out of the Way

Electrical and phone cords that run through the middle of walkways or rooms present dangerous tripping hazards for those at risk of falling. Remove these hazards by rearranging your cords so that they are out of way and not blocking your walking path.

Install More Lighting in Your Home

Attempting to navigate your home in near or complete darkness could easily result a trip, bump and fall. Reduce the risk of this scenario by keeping your home brightly lit. Examine your home to find areas that are dimly lit and install more lighting in those areas. In addition, place a lamp within reach of your bed for nighttime needs and store flashlights in easy-to-access areas in case of a power outage.

Optimize the Kitchen

Many home kitchens are built with shelving and cabinetry that can be hard to access for most people. Make sure you don’t slip and fall trying to access items in these tall storage areas by placing your kitchen necessities on easy-to-reach areas.

Double-Check the Bathroom

Ensure that your bathmat is non-slip, that there are easily accessible handles or railings installed in your bathroom, and that your bathroom is cleaned regularly to avoid slippery soap buildup.

Have a Plan in Place in Case You Fall

Taking the steps listed above will help you reduce the risk of falling, but you should still have a plan in place in case a fall does occur. Having access to a medical alert system and a fall detection pendant could help greatly if you do fall.  

 


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