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Preventing Dangerous Slips and Falls
In honour of Older Americans Month, a new series of videos on preventing dangerous, unintentional falls among seniors with vision loss has been launched.
This year's theme for Older Americans Month "Living Today for a Better Tomorrow" reflects the Administration on Aging's (AoA) focus on prevention efforts and programs throughout the country that are helping older adults have better health as they age and avoid the risks of chronic disease, disability and injury.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one-third of adults aged 65 and older fall each year in the United States. People with vision loss are almost twice as likely to experience multiple falls as those with normal vision.
"Though vision problems increase your risk of falling, there are a number of things seniors can do to stay safe at home," said Judy Scott, Director of the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Center on Vision Loss. "For example, regular exercise like tai chi helps balance, and improving the lighting in your home makes it easier to see your surroundings."
The video series, Preventing Falls by Adapting Your Home, suggests simple and inexpensive changes to a home that can dramatically lessen the chances of a dangerous fall. The videos, created with the help of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center Community Occupational Services Program, offer simple steps to prevent falls, increase mobility, and make a home a safer environment.
Featured tips include:
- Don't store the things you need in high places that would require the use of a step stool to reach.
- Apply non-skid mats or appliqués in bold, contrasting colors to the surface of the tub or shower.
- Arrange your furniture so that there is a clear path for walking, and keep clutter out of walkways. Avoid using furniture on wheels.
- Clap-on/clap-off lights in the living room and in your bedroom will keep you from having to get up from your chair to adjust the lighting.
- During the winter months, keep outdoor pathways clear of ice and snow by using kitty litter or salt, or ask someone to shovel the walkway.
REHACARE.de; Source: The American Foundation for the Blind
- More about the American Foundation for the Blind at: www.afb.org