Aside from being a much-needed reprieve from the cold days of winter, spring is a time of change, of rebirth, of fresh air. It’s also a time of year marked by frequent and heavy rains in many parts of the country. And while ice and snow can make navigating the outdoors dangerous, the rain can make it equally risky to venture out this time of year.
From a slippery walkway to in-home accidents, there are hidden safety hazards for seniors that can occur both inside and outside of the house. Falls happen for different reasons, but consider the following Spring safety tips in the coming months for prevention.
Spring Safety Tips For Seniors
Since the weather can change so abruptly around this time of year, there are safety concerns that come along with unpredictability. From playing it safe on rainy days, to avoiding potential debris on windy days, there are many ways to help prevent accidents from happening. Here are some of the best Spring safety tips for you to consider:
- Keep An Eye On The Ground. In the early days of Spring, the sidewalks and walkways can be littered with fallen leaves, flowers and decaying fruit from trees. These can always create a potential fall hazard for seniors, so be sure to tread carefully and avoid shuffling your feet in these areas. This is especially true after experiencing heavy rains, which can make for a slippery walkway, even a day or two later.
- Drive Carefully. While this is, of course, a safety tip that applies year round, since the Spring is typically a rainy season, you should drive with the same amount of caution as you would with snow. With heavy rains, you can experience limited visibility and difficulty controlling your vehicle, which makes for a dangerous situation.
- Lace Up Your Rubber Soles. A sturdy pair of rubber-bottomed shoes are essential to prevent trips and falls on a slippery walkway or soggy, muddy grass. If your current shoes don’t have good traction or are uncomfortable, it’s time to toss them and invest in a comfortable pair of sneakers that have thin rubber bottoms, since a bulky rubber sole can actually result in more falls--and injuries.
While protecting yourself from potential fall hazards outside of the house is important, taking the necessary steps for prevention inside of the house is equally so. The National Institutes of Health reports that 6 out of 10 seniors experience falls in their own home. The NIH also states that “many falls could be prevented by making simple changes in your living areas, as well as personal and lifestyle changes.”
Some of these simple changes to avoid home accidents include:
- Spring Cleaning. Getting rid of clutter around the house is the best way to prevent falls and home accidents from happening. If it’s physically or emotionally challenging for you to tackle your spring cleaning, enlist a friend or family member to help you. It will provide you with the additional encouragement you need and enable you to share stories and memories with a loved one.
- Secure Rugs to the Floor. Many in-home falls occur because your foot can get inadvertently caught on thick carpeting or buckled rugs.
- Improve Lighting. Even though this time of year is marked by more sunlight and longer days, swapping out dull bulbs for brighter options can help prevent home accidents. It is especially recommended to install nightlights along any night time routes to the bathroom and in stairwells.
- Be Aware of Wet Spots. This is especially true during this time of year, with so much heavy rain. If you know that you will be going out in the rain, or have guests coming in from the rain, be sure to grab a towel and put it down by the door. The towel will prevent excess water from pooling on the floor, which will also prevent falls from occurring.
- Wear A Medical Guardian. While it’s not possible to completely avoid home accidents and falls, you can ensure your future wellbeing by wearing your Medical Guardian medical alert system in the house. With different options at different price points to suit your individual needs, Medical Guardian keeps you connected to help 24/7, should you need it. So, for example, if you happen to fall down in the kitchen but your cell phone is in the living room, you won’t get stuck without access to speedy assistance.
And now we are making it easier than ever to stay connected to help. As a special Spring offer, we are providing new customers with a $25 Amazon gift card when you purchase an annual plan for any of our Medical Guardian medical alert systems. Simply enter the promo code NOJOKE17 at checkout for an online order or mention it to your Life Safety Consultant over the phone.