Did you know that most falls suffered by the elderly happen in the home? Keeping safe at home is important for the elderly, especially those living independently, who might have to maintain their own living spaces daily. Some fall-related injuries can result in hospitalization or cause a significant decline in mobility. While fall hazards are easy to overlook, they are also easy to fix. Here is a bedroom safety checklist that will help keep you safe in your home.
- Avoid having bedspreads, linens, and curtains that reach the floor. This can cause your feet to get tangled up in them, making you lose your balance. Before you get out of bed, take a glance at the floor to make sure no pillows or blankets are blocking your walking path.
- Your nightstands should be sturdy enough to support your weight should you need to hold onto them while you stand or catch your balance.
- Ensure that your bed is of the recommended height. Beds that are too high or low can cause a fall. According to the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, the recommended height of a bed is a 20 to 23-inch height difference from the floor to the top of the mattress.
- Before you get out of bed, sit on the edge of the bed with both of your feet flat on the floor. Make sure that you are not experiencing any sort of dizziness and that your balance is solid before you stand.
- Wear supportive slippers with rubber or any other non-skid soles while you are walking around.
- Remove carpets or use carpet tape to secure the edges of your carpets and rugs to prevent them from slipping, buckling, or flipping up in the corners. This can cause you to trip over them if you are not careful, so it’s best to have them held firmly in place.
- Ensure that all power cords are neatly secured behind furniture so that you do not trip over them.
- When getting dressed, have a sturdy chair that you can sit on to help you with your balance.
- Have your lamps placed in easily-accessible positions so that you do not need to walk around your room in the dark.
- Alternatively, a nightlight in the bedroom and bathroom can help you avoid tripping or bumping into something in the dark.
- Keep your pets out of your bedroom to ensure that they don’t get in your way and cause a fall in the dark—this helps both you and your pet keep safe!
- Avoid or limit clutter in your bedroom. Try not to leave laundry baskets, boxes, or any sort of bags on the floor.
Keeping Safe in the Bedroom
While the above checklist may be exhaustive, all of these items are relatively easy to do. Making these small changes around your house, and to your daily habits, can help you ensure your safety and peace of mind while relaxing at home. These tips are important especially for the elderly who are living alone.