How to Prevent Slip and Fall Accidents of Seniors in the Living Room and Stairs

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For the adage, "Prevention is better than cure," nothing could be truer than learning how to prevent slip and fall accidents of seniors in their own living spaces.
This is because having a slip and fall accidents are the number one risk with seniors as their age advances.
The problem with seniors having even just a light slip injury, the effects are sometimes devastating to their overall health status and to their productivity and social life.
Many seniors who used to be healthy and independent individuals will suddenly find themselves suffering from difficulty in walking hence the need for walkers with wheels.
To be honest, many seniors who were healthy before and had suffered from a bad fall have either died or never completely recovered from their slip and fall accidents.
The reason for the high incidence in falls in seniors is the fact that many of them are currently suffering from a host of ailments and some of these are: diminished senses, problems with depth perception, physical weakness, poor balance, obesity, and a previous fall accident.
These health risk factors coupled with the basic layout of the home is what makes for another serious fall.
Now let's try to make it safe for your senior mother to use the living room and the stairs.
  • Leave your living room and hallways wide if your mom already uses mobility devices such as walkers, wheelchairs, or a cane.
    These things need a wider space for her to maneuver therefore you should rearrange your furniture to accommodate this need.
  • If you live with too much d├ęcor in the home try to remove objects that distract and cause disorientation additionally you may also post signs on doors so that your mom will not be confused which part of the house she's in.
  • If mom has problems with perception of depth, see to it that you don't have glass tables in your living room, for glass doors you should mark them with stickers to prevent her from walking straight into it, and also mark your steps with bright paint or non skid tape to highlight the change in floor level so that you can prevent falls on your steps.
  • Also if mom uses walkers with wheels in particular, you should remove loose carpets or throw rugs from your living room because these have caused walkers to snag thus causing seniors to fall over themselves.
  • Many times slip and fall accidents in the living room are caused by appliance cords therefore it's a must that these should be kept out of the way to prevent your senior mom from tripping on them.
    You can do this by rearranging your living room furniture or taping the cords to the floor with non-skid tape.
  • If mom has to climb stairs, it's a good idea that she has another walker upstairs that she can use this way she doesn't have to bring the walker with her which can be next to impossible because she will be busy holding on to the grab bars.
  • If you have a spare room downstairs why don't you just transfer mom there so that she will not have to spend lots of energy climbing stairs that is if stair lifts are not a practical solution for you.
  • You can also try installing rubber treads on uncarpeted stairs or mount handrails or grab bars on the walls of these stairs.
  • Good illumination is important if you're living with a senior especially if this person already has poor vision.
    The living room, hallways, and the stairs area should be well lighted even at night.
  • Encourage your senior mom to always wear comfortable non skid shoes with low heels or just flat soles as a slip prevention measure.
    Slippers are a no-no for a person her age as studies have confirmed that they pose a risk for falling.
Many slip and fall accidents happen at home but they are preventable if one follows the steps outline above.
This is an issue that should be undertaken not only by you but also by your caregiver should you hire one and of course your mom since she is the primary beneficiary of such fall preventive measures.
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