Falls pose a major threat to the health and livelihood of seniors in America. With one in every four Americans aged 65 and older experiencing a fall every year, it’s important to recognize the very real risks of falling and to take steps to fall-proof your home.
While many seniors focus on eliminating risks from high-risk areas, like the bathroom, living room, and kitchen, it is also important to fall-proof your bedroom. Bedroom fall prevention can help you avoid falls getting in and out of bed, when changing clothes, and simply when going about your day to day life.
Here are 4 easy steps you can take to prevent falls in your bedroom.
1. Illuminate Your Room With Bright and Accessible Lighting
Whether you’re an early bird who gets out of bed before dawn or you have to make late-night trips to the bathroom, it’s crucial to have proper lighting in your bedroom. Poor lighting can make you more susceptible to falls, especially when you are just waking up from a deep slumber.
Consider placing a lamp or nightlight on both sides of the bed. That way, no matter which side you stand up on, you have some light. When you wake up at night, try to switch on the light as soon as possible – and definitely switch it on before you start moving around. Preferably, have a light switch that is easy to reach without requiring you to get out of bed. If you’re worried that you won’t remember to switch the light on, you may opt for a night light instead.
The easier it is for you to access lights and see your room, the lower your risk of falling will be. You may also keep a flashlight in your bedside drawer to use if you ever need extra light or if the electricity goes out.
2. Remove Clutter From Walkways and Secure Rugs With Non-Slip Backing
Bright lighting does little good if your walkways are full of potential hazards. Examine the walkways between the bed and the door and the door and the restroom to make sure there is nothing blocking the walkway.
You want your walkways to be as wide open as possible to avoid falling. This may mean removing things like clothing, chords, pet toys, shoes, and personal items. Instead of the floor, place these items in an easy-to-reach area in your closet or drawers.
In addition to removing clutter from walkways, it’s essential to secure any rugs you have with non-slip backing. If a corner of your rug gets turned up and you step the wrong way, you can easily trip and fall over your rug – especially if it is the middle of the night. However, by adding non-slip backing, you will make sure your rug stays secured to the floor and safe for walking.
3. Position Your Bed Safely and Use Safety Rails
Your bed is the centerpiece of your bedroom and it is also where you spend much of your time in your bedroom. As a result, it’s important to safety-proof your bed, too – not just the space around it.
First and foremost, make sure your bed is sitting at the right height. If your bed is too low for you, it can force you to put extra effort into getting in and out of bed. This not only puts unnecessary pressure on your joints, but it also puts you at risk of losing your balance and falling. If your bed is too high, on the other hand, you could slip and fall when getting in or out of bed.
You can prevent falls by making sure your bed is just high enough so that your knees are bent at a 90-degree angle and feet are flat on the floor while sitting on the edge of the bed. If your feet are dangling, the bed is too high and you may want to consider a lower frame.
Another way to prevent falls in your bedroom is to install bed rails. Bed railings fit between your box spring and mattress to provide support with getting in and out of bed. These safety rails can also prevent you from falling out of bed while sleeping.
4. Keep Your Phone or Medical Alert System Within Arm’s Reach
Most importantly, be sure to keep your phone or medical alert system by your side at all times. It’s a good idea to keep your phone next to your bed so you can call for help in the event of an emergency without even getting out of bed.
Unfortunately, accidents happen, so in the event of a fall, it’s important to call 911 if you think you may need assistance. Still, bedroom safety is crucial and it can help you prevent falls around your home.
Prevent Falls by Finding The Right Walking Aid For You
Whether you’ve already suffered a fall or have had a few close calls lately, buying a walking aid can help give you back your freedom and stability. Choosing a cane or a walker can help you get around your home without worrying about falling. Take the first steps to increase your mobility and prevent falls in your bedroom by heading over to our online store today.