Young people often forget just how many accidents can occur while walking around the house. Even if young people fall, most will just get up and brush themselves off. The situation is different, however, for the elderly. Older people have brittle bones and joints that can break with a simple fall. Because of this, steps must be taken to help prevent the elderly from falling. Here are some ways for you to help, especially if there is an elderly living in your house.
- Exercise. First of all, you should encourage the person to exercise regularly. Just because a person is old does not mean that he should refrain from exercising altogether. Unless the doctor has specified that the elderly should not exercise, most elderly people can handle mild activities such as walking and sometimes, even jogging. Exercise will make the muscles more firm and the ligaments and tendons much more flexible. This way, a slight fall will not affect the body of the elderly as much.
- Medications. Also make sure that the elderly gets his daily dose of medication. Without medication, older people can become very weak and may become more prone to accidents, including falls. Make sure that you have a chart where all of the medication that the elderly is supposed to take is written. Make sure that you monitor the medication intake, including the correct time interval between each medicine. There are some drugs that are to be taken once a day, while there are others that are to be taken thrice. There are even some drugs that need to be taken each hour. Make sure that the elderly has full access to these medications at the correct times.
- Handrails. If the houses where the elderly lives have stairs make sure that you attach handrails on the stairs so that the elderly will be able to climb the stairs safely. Apart from hand rails, attach rubber padding on the steps, so that each step has more traction and less chance of accidentally slipping. More importantly, make sure that the steps are clean and dry and that there are no books or small items that can cause the elderly to trip.
- Footwear. Also choose the shoes and slippers that the elderly uses. The best are those that are light and comfortable, but which have well designed soles that are made from rubber with traction. This will keep the elderly from accidentally slipping. Apart from footwear, consider getting a walking aid or a cane for the elderly.
- House arrangement. Make sure that all of the furniture in the house are arranged in such a way as to allow the elderly to walk in a simple and straight line. Apart from the furniture arrangement, make sure that you clean up the surroundings frequently. Make sure that there are no water spills where the elderly can slip. Also make sure that there is appropriate lighting around the house at all times.
With these steps, you should be able to help the elderly walk around the house without the risk of accidentally falling.