When entertaining over the holidays, it is especially important when older adults come to visit to consider ways to prevent falls. While it is important for everyone to use caution and have a safe environment to prevent falls, older adults are especially vulnerable. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) falls are the leading cause of injuries among older adults. For the elderly, even if no injuries occur, a fall can lead to a fear of falling. The fear of falling can then lead to a limiting of activities, which can further debilitate one's strength and increase the risk of future falls.
During the holidays, decorations on the floor and electrical cords from electrical tabletop ornaments and holiday lights that are not properly placed out of walkways can be a source of falls. It can be especially difficult for people who are reliant on a walker to navigate around. Older adults who have a shuffling gait may also be at a higher risk of falls. If cords from holiday decorations and lights cannot be placed completely out of walkways, make sure they are covered and secured with duct tape. And most glaring, make sure walkways, paths and driveways are clear and free from ice and snow.
For further information on falls prevention or to find a falls prevention program in your area call NY Connects. You can reach NY Connects by phone: Jamestown areas: 661-7582, Dunkirk/Fredonia areas: 363-4582 and Mayville areas/mid county: 753-4582, fax 753-4477, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can come and see us at 7 North Erie St.; Mayville. NY Connects is brought to you in cooperation from the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging and the Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services.