Your Personal Safety

Falls Prevention

Many people are injured every year by falling in their own homes and the risk increases with age, but fear of falling can also be a major worry for some people.  However, there are some simple steps that you can take to reduce your risk of falling at home.

Minimise trip hazards

  • Remove rugs or ensure that they have non-slip backs or tape
  • Tape down loose carpet edges where you walk or fit door threshold strips
  • Make sure there are no trailing electric wires or cables where you walk
  • Arrange furniture so that it is not in your way when you walk
  • Keep the areas where you walk, especially stairs, clear of clutter

Lighting

  • Ensure that your home is well lit and that bulbs are working and bright enough
  • Turn lights on as soon as it starts getting dark
  • Have a light which you can turn on when in bed
  • If you use the toilet at night, put on a landing light or have a motion sensative light

Move safely

  • Install handrails in the bathroom, by the toilet, at steps or along hallways
  • Use the handrail when going up or down stairs and consider fitting a second rail
  • Avoid dizziness by standing up slowly if you have been sitting or lying down for some time
  • Take your time - don’t hurry to answer the door or phone, or turn quickly
  • Use a walking aid appropriate to your needs

Clothing

  • Check that your slippers or shoes fit properly
  • Ensure that your nightclothes are away from your feet
  • Wear clothes that are easy to put on and take off.  Sit whilst you dress or undress
  • Use aids that reduce the need to bend, such as a sock aid or long handled shoe horn

Think about storage

  • Keep items, such as pots and pans or clothing, that you use regularly in cupboards or on shelves that are easy to reach without bending or stretching
  • If you have to reach something at a higher level, use a firm stepladder - preferably with a handle - don't stand on a chair

Eyesight

  • Have your eyes tested regularly
  • Remember to wear your glasses
  • If you have two pairs for different activities, remember to change them over when necessary
  • Be aware that vari-focal glasses distort distance

Look after your feet

Keep active 

  • Regular gentle exercise helps with bone and muscle strength and balance, all of which help prevent falls
  • Ask your GP or other health profession that may be supporting you as to whether they would consider referring you to the National Exercise Referral Scheme

Medical health

  • Have your medications checked on a regular basis by either your GP or Pharmacist

Further Information and Support

  • Ageing Well in Wales has a lot of information to help people reduce the risk of falls, including ideas for gentle exercise to improve strength and balance and tips to prevent falling.  Take a look at their Falls Prevention Resource Hub
  • You are able to complete an NHS Community Physiotherapy self-referral to request an assessment of your mobility or discuss any fear of falling that you may have.
  • If you live in your own home or rent privately, contact Care & Repair to request a 'Home Safety Check'
  • Consider getting a Community Alarm

 

ID: 2035, revised 26/02/2019