Falls Prevention

Fall prevention is critically important, especially as our population ages. An estimated 1 in 3 people in Canada over the age of 65 experience a fall every year. This can lead to serious, debilitating injury and in some cases death.

Keep your home safe! The majority of injuries are predictable and preventable. Use this checklist to help you find situations that may put older family members at risk for a fall.

 

In the kitchen

  • Use a sturdy stool for reaching high cupboards.
  • Keep everyday dishes and kitchen supplies within easy reach.
  • Ensure tile, linoleum, and rugs are secured to the floor.
  • Ensure the dials on the stove are clearly marked ON/OFF.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen and know how to use it.

 

In the bedroom

  • Keep a clear, well-lit path from the bedroom to the bathroom for night time travel.
  • Have easy access to a phone from your bed.
  • Have easy access to a lamp from your bed.

 

In the bathroom

  • Install grab bars in the tub and by the toilet.
  • Have a non-skid bath mat beside your tub.
  • Use a rubber bath mat in your tub.
  • Keep medications stored out of this hot moist area.

 

In the basement

  • Keep stairways well-lit and free of clutter.
  • Secure handrails on BOTH sides of the stairway.
  • Know how to change a fuse or reset a circuit breaker.
  • Set the hot water heater to no more than 130 degrees Fahrenheit or 54 degrees Celsius.
  • Safely store paint, turpentine, gasoline and other hazardous materials.

 

Fire hazards

  • Keep extension cords in good condition and out of travel paths.
  • Use only the recommended amount of plugs in an electrical outlet.
  • Have one working smoke alarm for each level of your home and within sleeping areas.
  • Have an emergency exit and escape plan, in case of fire.

 

For added security

  • Use programmable lights that come on in your house when you are away.
  • Be able to see who is at exterior doors without having to unlock them.
  • Be sure windows have operating locks.

 

Your health

  • Staying active
  • Using medications and safety aids wisely
  • Eating healthy, balanced meals

 

For Further Information

Call the Injury Prevention Program: (807) 625-5900

or toll-free 1-888-294-6630

Last Updated: 13/10/2016