Home safety tips to reduce fall risk

Safety tips room by room to minimize the risk of falling.

Room-by-room guide to eliminate the most causes of falls

Falls in and around the home are the most frequently occurring accident.  The good news is that many falls are preventable. With simple changes you can reduce falls risk and make your home a safe place for yourself and your family members. Home safety measures for elderly can involve changes such as removing tripping hazards, installing grab bars and handrails, and improving lighting in key areas of the home. Protect yourself with the tips below.

Bedroom fall prevention safety tips for seniors

You can create a safer living environment in the bedroom by clearing clutter, keeping frequently used items within easy reach, and using assistive devices.

Bedroom safety issues

Bedroom with safety issues for seniors

  1. Cluttered nightstand. Too many objects leaves no room for more useful items such as a table lamp.
  2. Objects on floor. Clutter can lead to tripping. Worn carpeting or loose throw rugs also pose a hazard.
  3. Non-accessible phone. Without a phone near your bed, getting up or rushing to answer phone could lead to a fall.
  4. Awkward furniture arrangement. Prevents easy access to doorway and does not offer safe pathway around room.

Bedroom tips: much safer

Bedroom organized to eliminate safety issues for seniors

  1. Clean nightstand. Neater surface leaves room for table lamp or other necessary items that can be accessed from bed.
  2. Less cluttered floor. Shoes are placed away from walking areas. Secure rugs with double-sided tape or remove entirely.
  3. Accessible phone or Lifeline device. Phone within reach of bed or, with Lifeline service, phone could be answered with a push of a button.
  4. Better furniture placement. Removing chair creates a safer path to doorway.

Bedroom fall hazards

Bedroom with fall risks for seniors

  1. Little nighttime lighting. Poor or no night lighting can lead to falls.
  2. Assistive equipment not within reach of bed.
  3. Disheveled bedding. Bedding allowed to drape on floor is a tripping hazard.

Bedroom tips: much better

Bedroom set up to reduce fall risks

  1. Appropriate nighttime lighting. Table lamp close to bed and wall mounted, light-sensitive nightlight added to improve visibility.
  2. Assistive equipment within reach.
  3. Keep bedding tucked in. Removal of draped bedding and a cleaner floor in general reduces falls risk.

Stairway safety measures for older adults

Stairway safety is a fundamental element of the home safety measures, as falls on stairs can result in serious injuries. Here are some stairway safety tips to reduce the risk of falls.

Stairs fall hazards

Stairway with fall hazards for seniors

  1. No handrail. Nothing to hold onto when using stairs.
  2. Cluttered stairs. Objects and throw rugs on stairs or landing can increase risk of falling.
  3. Poor lighting. Low light levels can increase risk of tripping or missing steps.

Stairs tips: much safer

Stairways set up to reduce fall risks

  1. Handrail. Add handrails to all stairs, securely attached to wall at proper height.
  2. Clean stairs. Patrol stairs regularly to ensure objects are removed at all times.
  3. Stairway lighting. Make sure walkways are well-lit. Ceiling lights (with well-placed wall switches at the top and bottom of stairs) can help increase visibility.

Living room safety tips for older adults

Keeping the living room as safe as possible is essential for seniors who often spend a lot of time in this area of their home. Safety measures include clearing clutter to prevent tripping hazards, using non-slip rugs or removing rugs altogether, and ensuring that furniture is arranged to allow for safe and unobstructed movement.

Living room safety issues

Living Room with fall hazards for seniors

  1. Non-secured rug. Curled rug is easy to trip over.
  2. Exposed cords. Extension or telephone cords can easily entangle feet.
  3. Clutter. Craft projects and basket are blocking path to sofa.

Living room tips: much safer

Living Room organized for senior safety

  1. Remove or secure rugs. Eliminates tripping hazard.
  2. Hidden cords. Telephones and electronic devices are placed nearer to wall sockets, and all cords are removed from walkways.
  3. Organized room. Less overall clutter and organized projects reduce falls risk.

Bathroom safety tips for seniors

Bathroom safety is a critical concern for seniors, as it is a common site for falls and injuries. Here is what you can do to prevent falls in the bathroom, while maintaining independence and quality of life.

Bathroom safety issues

Bathroom with safety issues for seniors

  1. No grab bars. Senior could fall when exiting shower or toilet.
  2. Poor nighttime lighting.
  3. Loose bathmat. Increases slipping hazard.
  4. No assistive equipment in shower. Showering or bathing can become more dangerous.

Bathroom tips: much safer

Bathroom set up to reduce fall risks

  1. Grab bars. Ensures safer egress from shower or toilet.
  2. Nightlight. Installing a light-sensitive nightlight that automatically turns on when needed increases visibility.
  3. Bathmat. Use non-slip bathmat or remove altogether.
  4. Assistive equipment in shower. A sturdy shower seat and hand-held shower head with hose reduces risk of falls.

Kitchen safety tips for seniors

Kitchen safety is an essential aspect of home safety for seniors, as it is a place where accidents can easily occur due to decreased mobility or balance, poor vision or some medication side effects.

Kitchen safety issues

Kitchen with fall hazards

  1. Poor placement. Often-used items are placed too high.
  2. Non-secured rug. Curled rug is easy to trip over.
  3. Pet dishes. Dishes placed in commonly used area of kitchen.

Kitchen tips: much safer

Kitchen organized to reduce fall risks

  1. Better organization. Often-used items are moved to lower cabinets.
  2. Remove or secure rugs. Eliminates tripping hazard.
  3. Pet dishes. Dishes placed out of the way to remove chance of tripping or spillage.

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