Home Safety

Home Safety - Elderly Persons Safety

Slips, Trips and Falls

Accidents in the home are more frequent and more distressing, both physically and mentally, the older we get. Falls, slips and trips are the most common type of accident in the home. If certain precautions are taken, most accidental falls can be prevented. The following safety changes may help:

Fitting a letterbox cage can help avoid bending down to pick up letters;

Using 100W light bulbs in the kitchen and stairways will make it easier to see any hazards;

Buying long life bulbs so they do not have to be changed as often;

Highlighting the outer edge of steps with non-slip white paint to make them more visible;

Trying to avoid having trailing wires and clutter in walking areas and on stairs;

Using non-slip mats under rugs, in the kitchen, inside and next to the bath and on stair landings;

Installing handrails by the toilet, bath and stairs will aid balance and make getting around easier;

Removing or repairing frayed carpet edges will make them safer and will reduce the risk of somebody tripping over them;

Think about storing frequently used items in areas that are easily accessible. This avoids the need to stretch or bend down;

Advising the individual to seek help for chores, such as changing curtains or bulbs;

Using a sturdy set of non-slip steps with a safety chain and handrail is safer than standing on a chair;

Removing casters from easily moveable furniture can make them more stable so they can be leant against, or held onto to aid balance;

Spreading salty sand on wet or icy steps will make them less slippery;

Mopping up spillages immediately will reduce the risk of slipping;

Keep active, as exercise can improve strength, balance and co-ordination, all of which can prevent a fall;

Enjoy the sun as vitamin D helps to keep your bones healthy and strong.

What to do if Somebody has a Fall and Cannot Get Up

Do not move them;

Keep them warm;

Summon help - phone for an ambulance.

Keeping Warm

At Home

Wear several thin layers of clothes rather than one thick layer. The warmth of your body will get trapped between the layers;

Choose clothes made with wool, cotton or fleece synthetic fibres that are designed to be light and warm;

In the coldest weather, a good way to keep warm in bed is to wear bed socks and a nightcap, as well as thermal underwear and a warm nightdress or pyjamas.


Several thin layers of clothing under your coat will keep you warmer than one thick layer;

Wear something on your head, otherwise you will get cold very quickly;

Wear warm, dry, flat, non-slip shoes or boots, especially in cold weather.

Eat Well

Aim to have at least one hot meal a day and have hot drinks regularly throughout the day;

Have a hot drink before bedtime;

Prepare a thermos flask of a hot drink to have by your bed in case you wake up in the night feeling cold.

Keep Moving
Do not remain sitting still for long periods of time;

Spread chores out through the day so you can alternate between rest and activity;

Try to take moderate exercise, such as walking.