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Posted 11/11/2019 in Category 1

Fall Precautions in Home Care


Fall Precautions in Home Care


When dealing with a physically impaired, whether it be from age or a disability of some sort, one of the most important aspects of caring for these individuals is making sure that proper fall precautions are taken. When setting up rooms and planning everyday activities, there are certain things that should be considered. Fall dangers can vary from individual to individual depending upon the severity of their problem. When dealing with an individual that is a fall risk, be sure that you work with their care team to establish a set of parameters that should be followed when initiating care.

What Type of Things Should I Look For

When preparing an area so that individuals that are fall hazards will be safer, it is important to consider many different aspects. Check to be sure that there are as few obstacles in the way as possible and that there is a proper amount of light in the area. However, these are not the only considerations when dealing with a fall risk. The following is a list of items that you should consider when dealing with an individual that is unsteady on their feet.

  • Obstacles

Obstacles can be a major source of a fall hazard when it comes to individuals that are unsteady on their feet. When checking the environment, make sure that you check for things such as plant stands, rugs, cords, baskets, and even something as small as a dog toy. These articles could cause a problem for the individual. It doesn't matter if they are at home or in a skilled care facility, the caregiver should always make sure that the path is cleared of anything that could cause them to trip.

  • Lighting

You should always make sure that the area being traveled is lit properly so that individuals might be able to compensate on their own. If the lighting in an area is not good, it could cause them to not be able to see an obstacle that could be hazardous to their balance. Be sure that any lights that reach the end of life are replaced and make sure that the individual has the best view of the area as possible.

  • Proper Shoes

While most people don't think that much about the type of shoes they wear, for someone with mobility or balance problems, this could be a key factor in fall prevention. If the shoes don't fit them well or has become worn in a particular direction, it can throw them off balance, causing them to fall. Make sure to check the shoes periodically for flaws or issues that could cause the individual to not be able to keep their balance.

  • Walking Exercises

Walking exercises can help strengthen the muscles in the legs and other areas so that individuals will be more capable of keeping their balance. They may not be able to completely recover their functionality, but it should at least help. Make sure that anyone having these types of issues follow the guidelines set up by the care team so that they can potentially become more capable.

  • Balance Exercises

When dealing with an individual that is a fall risk, work with the care team to see if their eligible for balance exercises. This type of exercise is simple enough and should help to strengthen a person's core so that they will be more apt to keep their balance. Make sure, however, that their condition does not prevent them from being able to do exercises such as this and that it will not further impede the person's progress.

  • Consult a Physician

Consulting a physician if you think that someone is a fall risk is an important part of treatment. They should be able to assess the individual and determine whether or not an outside factor is causing them to be at risk. The physician will also be able to give feedback and limitations on what an individual should be capable of doing so that a care plan can be properly set up. Once the physician has done their assessment and you have the information you need from them, work with the care team so that everyone will be on the same page.

If I Think Someone is a Fall Risk, what Should I Do?

Be vigilant! The individual may not realize that they have as many problems as they do with balance or seeing. A doctor's visit will help determine the extent of their condition and can also provide you with guidelines on what they should be capable of doing. Having said that, once the doctor has seen the individual, make sure that you inform the care team of the problem and follow their recommendations to a T so that you can be sure that as a caregiver, the individual doesn’t end up with an accidental fall.

When Should Someone be Considered a Fall Risk?

As a caregiver, you should be familiar with the individual’s needs when it comes to walking. If you notice that they are having trouble keeping their balance or that they tend to run into things a lot, this is a good sign that they may need fall precautions in place. Make sure that the area is well-lit and that no obstructions are blocking the individual’s way. Once you have cleared the area to make sure that they will have his little trouble walking as possible, speak to the care team about making a doctor's appointment to see how deep the issues may go or what's causing it to develop.

In Conclusion

While there are many ways of helping to prevent falls, not all of them are suitable for every situation. Make sure if there is a care plan in place that the caregiver is following it as closely as possible. Keep an eye on any changes that may occur and make sure to report them to the team, nurses, and doctors. Follow up with them to be sure that the individual’s care is as good as possible. The whole point of this is to give them as good a quality of life as possible and be sure that whatever they're doing, that they are safe. 

 


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