Winter is here and snow has recently affected many areas of England. Hospitals have been under immense pressure in all departments, with Accident and Emergency experiencing high levels of elderly admissions.
The smallest fall for an elderly person can have serious consequences, so it is important at this time of year, when the risk of falling is higher, to be proactive in ensuring that the elderly are safe when out in the garden and community.
As the old saying goes, ‘prevention is better than cure’. With falls the biggest cause of hip fractures and accidental death amongst the elderly, we share some simple steps below to help prevent you or your loved one falling this winter.
• Minimise the amount of time outside and keep a close eye on pavements which may become slippery.
• If your elderly relative lives alone, arrange for someone to carefully shovel their steps and walkways.
• If taking a trip outside is vital, make sure you or your family member wear boots with non-skid soles and if they use a cane, replace the rubber tip before it is worn smooth.
• With snow and heavy rain likely during the winter months, water can easily enter the home from shoes, umbrellas and leaks. Therefore, make sure you use slip mats on any surfaces that might become slippery and clean up any spills straight way.
Making sure those really comfortable old slippers are still safe to wear and any carpet or rug edges are not going to cause injury will also help to remain safe at home.
If a fall does occur, it is essential to remain calm. As long as you or your loved one are not hurt, you can get up slowly by getting on to your hands and knees and using steady furniture or a chair to assist you. It is a good idea to rest for a short time afterwards before continuing with the day.
If you’re in a situation where you cannot get up or you are hurt, call for help, bang on the wall or the floor if you’re inside. If you have a life line, you can use this or reach for a phone nearby to call for assistance.
And finally, if you or a loved one needs extra care and support during the winter months, do not hesitate to contact the team here at Evercare on 01962 842548.