One out of three seniors will fall this year, but fewer than half of them will talk with their doctors about it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Falls are also the No. 1 cause of injuries to seniors.
A fall can be so frightening that seniors may avoid certain activities because they're afraid they'll fall again.
Whether it's slippery floors, rickety stairs, or electric cords, some of the most common causes of falls are in the home where you might have a false sense of security. That's why fall prevention starts with creating a safe living space.
Here are ways to prevent falling in your home:
1. Clean up clutter: Keep your home neat and tidy.
2. Repair or remove tripping hazards: Examine rooms and hallway looking for items such as loose carpet, slippery throw rugs or wood floorboards that stick up.
3. Install grab bars and handrails: These safety devices are crucial for going up and down stairs, getting on and off the toilet, and stepping in and out of the bathtub.
4. Avoid wearing loose clothing: Opt for better fitting and properly hemmed clothing that doesn't bunch up or drag on the floor.
5. Light it right: Inadequate lighting is another major hazard so install brighter light bulbs where needed like stairways or narrow hallways.
6. Wear shoes: Socks may be comfortable, but they present a slipping risk. If you insist on socks get the non-slip type that have grips on the soles.
7. Make it non-slip: Bathtubs and showers, as well as floors in kitchens, bathrooms, and porches can be extremely dangerous when wet. Non-slip mats are recommended.
8. Live on one level: Even with precautions like hand rails, stairs can present a big falling hazard. If possible, live on one level and if not be extra careful on stairs and try to limit your use of them.
9. Move more carefully. Many seniors fall at home by moving too quickly from a sitting to a standing position and vice versa. Slow down.
For seniors fall prevention means injury prevention. Ask your loved ones to help ensure that your rooms and stairways are clutter free and well equipped with lighting, handrails, grab bars and non-slip mats.