Top Tips for Preventing Falls in the Elderly

Wear properly fitted shoes: ditch the thongs, sandals, slippers and scuffs and opt for shoes with a sturdy, flat sole to provide stability, a soft lining to protect delicate skin and secure fastenings to prevent slipping and allow for swelling, and have your shoes properly fitted.  Note that a shoe which is too cushioned results in increased instability

Exercise: Walking is one of the best excercises to maintain and improve stability, balance and joint range of motion. Even fifteen minutes a day will help reduce falls, but ensure you wear well-fitting, supportive walking shoes.  Low impact activities such as Tai Chi and Yoga can greatly benefit balance and can easily be done at home

Nail and Foot Care:  ingrown, long or thick nails, corns and callouses may all cause pain and discomfort whilst walking and result in abnormal gait and instability as you compensate for these painful areas. Have them attended to by a Podiatrist before they become a problem

Check for Hazards: reduce the hazards of everyday life which may cause a trip or fall. Electrical cords, loose rugs or carpets and slippery floors can all be made safer. Non-slip mats in baths and showers are worth investing in

Improve Lighting: make sure your home is well lit and that light switches and lamps are within easy reach without any trip hazards in the way.  Good lighting will help you see hazards before you fall which is especially important when eyesight may be diminished.

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