Fall Prevention: How to Keep Your Home Safe

  • An older couple sits on the couch in their clean and clutter-free home.
Stuff has a way of creeping up on you. Before you know it, you’ve got a stack of books next to your bed and boxes meant to be given away accumulating by your front door. And what are all these chargers for?

While stuff is a fact of life, it’s also a potential trip hazard. And the last thing anyone needs is to be laid up recovering from a broken bone or sprain.

With that in mind, take a look around your house, keeping an eye out for any potential hazards. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Make Paths Clear

All of your hallways and paths should be clear of furniture, books, boxes, shoes, loose carpet or floorboards and, especially, electrical and telephone cords. Throw rugs should be gotten rid of altogether and double-sided tape should be used to keep larger area rugs from coming up at the corners.

Be Careful of Stairs

Ahhh, the steps. Such a convenient place to stash things you’re planning on taking upstairs sometime in the future. Make it a rule to simply never put anything there. You’ll also want to make sure that your steps are well-lit and have a secure handrail (some people place handrails on both sides of the steps for added safety.)

Watch out for Fido

Pets are responsible for an estimated 1 percent of all fall-related visits to the emergency room each year. To be sure, cats and dogs (and their toys) have a way of being underfoot at exactly the wrong moment. What’s more, about 25 percent of those emergency room visits involved walking a dog.

The take-home? Just try to be aware of where your pet is in general. Also, it’s important to train your dog not to jump on people or pull at the leash while on a walk.

Take Extra Care in the Bath

If you have a combo tub/shower, consider replacing it with a walk-in bathtub or shower system. Many of these offer built-in seating and they are usually designed to fit perfectly in the space of a conventional tub, making them easy to install.

Consider also installing raised-height seat toilets and grab bars where necessary. (Don’t make the mistake of thinking that towel bars will support your weight.)

Wear Sensible Shoes

Slippers may be cozy, but make sure you choose a pair with non-skid soles that won’t fall off your feet. Even better? Wear a pair of properly fitted shoes. If you’re worried about brining dirt in, keep a pair just to be used at home. The worst idea? Walking around in stockings.

Make an Appointment with Your Doctor

If you’ve fallen before or are concerned about a fall, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss the issue. He or she can evaluate any medications you’re taking that could affect your level of alertness. Your doctor can also evaluate any medical conditions—such as low blood pressure—that could make you feel lightheaded.

Consider More Space

Sometimes, we simply have too many things getting in the way. Too much furniture. Too many books. Too many boxes full of stuff you’re saving for the kids or grandkids. If that’s your situation, renting a self storage unit could free up the space you need to live more comfortably—and safely—at home.

At StorageMart, we offer affordable self-storage units that range from about the size of a closet to the size of a garage—or even bigger. They can be rented on a month-by-month basis and are always clean and well-lit. Check out our storage unit size guide or rent a unit online today.

About Sarah Little

Sarah Little, Marketing Director at StorageMart, holds a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration. She serves as Vice President on the Board of Directors for the Central Missouri Foster Care & Adoption Association, a non-profit group dedicated to improving the lives of children.

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