Falls are common accidents. Whether you misjudged a step on a staircase, your toddler took a tumble from their bed, or your elderly parent lost their balance, falls are a dangerous occurrence. Fall prevention is an important task, but the hazards that lead to falls are often overlooked. Here are our tips to prevent falls at any age.
Falls are the leading cause of non-fatal injuries in children under 15 years old. It can be hard to keep young children from climbing, jumping, and losing their balance. Here are some tips to help you protect your children:
- Never leave children unattended on a piece of furniture, counter, table, retaining wall, or other height. Even if they’re in a carrier or bassinet it is safest to place it on the floor.
- Open windows are very dangerous, even with screens installed. Use a window guard to protect open windows or watch children when the windows are open.
- Never allow children under the age of 6 to sleep in the top bunk of a bunk bed. Ensure that there are adequate safety rails, and that your children understand why they should never climb the bed or jump off it and should always use the ladder.
- Pad the edges and corners of furniture whenever possible to prevent injuries if children strike them while falling.
- Never allow children to play unsupervised on balconies, porches, or fire escapes.
Falls can be especially devastating to seniors, who may experience fractures or other serious injuries more frequently. Unfortunately, falls become much more common at older ages, but you can still work to prevent them with these tips:
- Get routine eye checkups. If you wear glasses, be sure to have your prescription checked as well. Changes in your vision can make it more difficult to judge obstacles and call lead to a loss of balance or falls.
- Install handrails where needed. Some common locations include in the shower and bathroom, near stairs or steps, the front or back porch, on pool stairs, and other locations where the ground changes significantly.
- Meet with a physical therapist. They can help you strengthen your coordination and balance with a personalized workout routine and recommend modifications to help you prevent falls.
- Rest when needed. As we age, it can be difficult to keep up with our activities the way we used to. Incorporating a stool in the kitchen, sitting and resting at the top of the stairs, and other small breaks can prevent fatigue and falls.
- Use a walking aid. Canes, walkers, mobility frames, and other devices can provide a little extra support and prevent you from losing your balance and falling.
We all can benefit from fall prevention efforts. Here are some general tips to help us prevent falls, regardless of our age:
- Clear up the clutter, especially near stairs and steps.
- Secure lose wires and cords. If you have a cord running across the floor, use a guard to protect it or remove it from the floor.
- Use non-slip mats. The bathroom is a good place to employ nonslip mats, both in the shower or tub and out of it. You also can use nonskid pads to secure rugs around the house.
- Be sure there’s adequate lighting. Misjudging steps can often be mitigated by making sure the area is well lit.
- Clean up spills. Liquid on the floor can make a slick surface—a perfect recipe for a slip and fall accident. Always mop up spills promptly.
At Williams DeClark Tuschman Co., L.P.A., your safety is important. Falls can have tragic consequences, but you can count on our Toledo personal injury attorneys to fully investigate the cause of your accident and advise you as to your legal options. Discuss your case today by scheduling a free case evaluation.