The great videos we have included in this series are:
Preventing elderly falls tips from Physical Therapy, Preventing falls, recommended changes to the home, Prevent
falls by using the right equipment, orning warm up exercises.
As we age, balance and weakness tends to effect the way we get around and influence
the things we do. When our balance and weakness decline gradually or all at once, falls are bound to happen. The
videos we have included in this series are designed to help you maintain good balance and strengthen weak muscles
to prevent falls which may cause further injuries. A few simple stretches, a couple of times each day, with a
few simple exercises could just do the trick! So watch the videos, head the warnings and get into the
Preventing Falls and Fractures
Safety first to prevent falls: At any age, people can change
their environments to reduce their risk of falling and breaking a bone.
Outdoor Safety Tips to Prevent Falls:
In nasty weather, use a walker or cane for added stability.
Wear warm boots with rubber soles for added traction.
Look carefully at floor surfaces in public buildings. Many floors are made of highly
polished marble or tile that can be very slippery. If floors have plastic or carpet runners in place, stay on
them whenever possible.
Identify community services that can provide assistance, such as 24-hour pharmacies and
grocery stores that take orders over the phone and deliver. It is especially important to use these services in
Use a shoulder bag, fanny pack, or backpack to leave hands free.
Stop at curbs and check their height before stepping up or down. Be cautious at curbs
that have been cut away to allow access for bikes or wheelchairs. The incline up or down may lead to a
Indoor Safety Tips to Prevent Falls:
Keep all rooms free from clutter, especially the floors.
Keep floor surfaces smooth but not slippery. When entering rooms, be aware of differences
in floor levels and thresholds.
Wear supportive, low-heeled shoes, even at home. Avoid walking around in socks,
stockings, or floppy, backless slippers.
Check that all carpets and area rugs have skid-proof backing or are tacked to the floor,
including carpeting on stairs.
Keep electrical and telephone cords and wires out of walkways.
Be sure that all stairwells are adequately lit and that stairs have handrails on both
sides. Consider placing fluorescent tape on the edges of the top and bottom steps.
For optimal safety, install grab bars on bathroom walls beside tubs, showers, and toilets. If you are unstable on your
feet, consider using a plastic chair with a back and nonskid leg tips in the shower.
Use a rubber bath mat in the shower or tub.
Keep a flashlight with fresh batteries beside your bed.
Add ceiling fixtures to rooms lit by lamps only, or install lamps that can be turned on
by a switch near the entry point into the room. Another option is to install voice- or sound-activated
Use bright light bulbs in your home.
If you must use a step-stool for hard-to-reach areas, use a sturdy one with a handrail
and wide steps. A better option is to reorganize work and storage areas to minimize the need for stooping or
Consider purchasing a portable phone that you can take with you from room to room. It
provides security because you can answer the phone without rushing for it and you can call for help should an
Don't let prescriptions run low. Always keep at least 1 week's worth of medications on
hand at home. Check prescriptions with your doctor and pharmacist to see if they may be increasing
your risk of falling. If you take multiple medications, check with your doctor and pharmacist about possible
interactions between the different medications.
Arrange with a family member or friend for daily contact. Try to have at least one person who knows where you
If you live alone, you may wish to contract with a monitoring company that will respond
to your call 24 hours a day.
Watch yourself in a mirror. Does your body lean or sway back and forth or side to side?
People with decreased ability to balance often have a high degree of body sway and are more likely to
Practice Balance Exercises Every Day
While holding the back of a chair, sink, or countertop, practice standing on one leg at a time for a minute.
Gradually increase the time. Try balancing with your eyes closed. Try balancing without holding on.
While holding the back of a chair, sink, or countertop, practice standing on your toes, then
rock back to balance on your heels. Hold each position for a count of 10. While holding the back of chair, sink, or
countertop with both hands, make a big circle to the left with hips, then repeat to the right. Do not move your
shoulders or feet. Repeat five times.
Reducing the Force of a Fall
Take steps to lessen your chances of breaking a bone in the event that you do fall:
Remember that falling sideways or straight down is more likely to result in a hip
fracture than falling in other directions. If possible, try to fall forward or to land on your
If possible, land on your hands or use objects around you to break a fall.
Walk carefully, especially on hard surfaces.
When possible, wear protective clothing for padding.
Talk to your doctor about whether you may be a candidate for hip padding.