NHS Trust Provides Fall Prevention Advice
30th January 2014
People should take steps to avoid becoming injured in a slip, trip or fall this winter, an NHS Trust has said.
Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust said a person’s likelihood of falling may increase with age due to factors including deteriorating strength and balance, arthritis, diabetes and eye problems. Winter poses its own slip, trip and fall hazards, including icy, wet and dark weather conditions.
The Trust’s Falls Prevention Lead Jill Phipps said people who have had a fall should tell their GP, therapist or nurse, as these professionals will arrange for the patient to receive a falls assessment and will provide them with advice about what they can do to reduce their likelihood of falling again.
Some of the fall mitigation devices they may recommend include installing grab handles and rails in the home, offering other equipment, or recommending the person on to an exercise class.
The NHS Trust recommended that when elderly people go out, they should:
– Plan their route in advance and give themselves enough time
– Avoid going out in the early morning or in the late afternoon when it gets dark and may be icy
– Wear well-fitting shoes and wrap up in warm clothes
– Use a walking stick for balance and support
– Put shopping purchases in a rucksack rather than in the hands, so that both hands are free
When indoors, elderly people should consider the following advice:
– Keep their home warm
– Look out for slip and trip hazards, such as clutter or electric cords, and deal with these risks
– Keep the house well lit, using handymen services to replace lightbulbs or tidy up if required
– Have rails fitted on both sides of the stairs and the toilet and bathroom, if needed
– Wear supportive, well-fitting indoor footwear
– Keep muscles supple and strong with regular exercise, including home exercise
– Drink plenty of fluids and eat a healthy balanced diet
– Ensure that there is a way to call for help or attention in an emergency
Slip, trip and fall accident claims
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