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Drew: Living Safely at Home

By Samuetta Hill Drew

Friends don’t allow friends to live in unsafe dwellings. Therefore, we will review some of the major safety hazards that lurk around your home which can be prevented. This week we’re going to investigate some possible ways to prevent falls inside and outside of your home, especially since winter is upon us and the days are much shorter.

Studies have shown that injuries due to falls are the most common hazard in and around a home. The facts show that one in five older adults who fall will sustain an injury involving a broken bone or head injury. Typically, falls occur because of wet floors, slippery steps or scattered toys.

This is why it is important to make sure your stairs and handrails are firmly secured. This includes those inside and out. You should also have proper lighting by your stairs, especially outside when it’s dark.

Make sure your outside steps are clear of any clutter, debris or other hazards like ice or snow. It is always a good idea to consider placing a mat or grip tape to make the surface less slippery. If you add individual rubber mats on each step, make sure during the rain that water doesn’t accumulate and create conditions for possible hydroplaning.

Secure all your area rugs in your bathrooms to avoid slips and water pooling on slick surfaces. You may also consider placing a non-skid mat or decals in your tub or shower.

It is also a great idea to install safety rails to help with getting in and out of the tub or shower. This merely provides additional support to those members of your family, especially the younger and older ones.

Christmas has just passed, and toys may be scattered around the house as the children play with their new toys.  Have a designated container for the children to place their toys in immediately after they finish playing with them. You can turn putting your toys up into a game for younger children. Make sure to secure any skateboards, bikes, scooters or any mobile toy so family, friends or visitors will not trip over them.

When you mop one of the room floors in your home, make sure you notify the family so no one will walk on it while it’s wet. Make sure it completely dries in all areas before allowing anyone to walk on it.

Making a commitment to Keeping an Eye on Safety in and around your home is a great way to start your new year!