Safe stairs can decrease senior falls

kevin_magna

February 2, 2012

Safe stairs can decrease senior fallsAccording to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three seniors age 65 and older will experience a fall each year. Many times these falls can occur in their own homes, which makes keeping a senior's house in tip-top shape a good way to help them stay fall-free, The Chronicle Herald reports.

Major fall risk areas in homes are the stairs – whether those outside the home or the ones leading to second floor. Keeping these areas maintained might help elders avoid falls.

According to the publication, installing handrails is a great way to help seniors balance on the stairs. Make sure the rails are secure, as a wobbly railing can be just as dangerous as not having one at all.

Although festive designs on stairs can add real flare to a home, they can also be distracting for elders. Visually distracting patterns can make it hard for a senior to decipher one step from the other, which can increase their chances of tumbling. If a person wants carpeted stairs, make sure to go for a solid color that's easy on the eyes.

Widening stairs and adding lighting can also decrease falls, and installing a medical alert system might be the best protection of all. This wearable device allows seniors to call for help should they suffer a fall or another emergency.