Fall Prevention: Simple tips to prevent falls

Nearly one-third of older adults experience a fall each year. One out of 10
falls result in a serious injury, such as a hip fracture. We would like all of
our residents to stay fit and healthy.

Here are some tips to help prevent falls:

1. Be Active; stay active! Physical activity can go a long way toward
fall prevention. Consider activities such as walking or yoga. Classes
are being broadcast on Westminster’s in-house TV channel 1890. The courtyards are always available for walking; early mornings are best due to the increasing heat during the day. Amanda Bruner, Wellness Coordinator, can assist with exercise and gym equipment introductions.

2. Be Alert! See your physician, or the Westminster Wellness Clinic, for
a medication review. Certain medications can increase your risk of
falling, especially when interacting with other medications.

3. Wear appropriate shoes! Consider changing your footwear as part
of your fall prevention plan. High heels, floppy slippers, flip flops
and shoes with slick soles can make you stumble and fall. Walking in
your stocking feet can cause you to slip on the floor/carpet of your
apartment, consider buying some non-skid socks to wear.

4. Improve your living space! Remove throw rugs, boxes, electrical cords
that can cause a fall. Improve the lighting in your apartment by placing
night lights in your bedroom, bathroom and hallways. Add a lamp
within reach of your bed for middle-of-the-night needs.

5. Use assistive devices! In addition to canes and walkers, use the handrails
when going down steps, add grab bars and a raised toilet seat.

6. Therapy! Get a therapy order (from your MD or the Wellness Clinic) for
evaluation of your gait if you are having trouble maintaining balance. The therapy department can assist you in offering options in modifying your apartment, reducing hazards and helping you navigate your world.