Six Top Ways to Avoid Falls in the Kitchen
Did you know that falling is the number one cause of accidents for adults aged over 65? And a kitchen is one room where falls commonly occur. Anything from a slick floor to an out-of-reach item can pose a serious fall risk. And especially when your independence is at stake, it’s crucial to take every possible measure to stay safe while preparing a meal. Here are five things you can do to help assess your kitchen’s safety and avoid a fall:
1. Put items you use often within easy reach:
It only takes a single slip from a chair or stool to cause a bone fracture. Rearrange cabinets so that dishes and other items you use frequently are easy to reach. Ensure that all drawers and cabinet drawers open and close easily, too. Always keep these closed when not in use.
2. Forget shiny floors:
Shiny kitchen floors look lovely, but they definitely add a slippery factor. Avoid using floor wax or high gloss polish on areas you’re going to walk on.
3. Wipe up spills right away:
Leaving liquids and greasy or sticky foods on the floor is inviting trouble. Mop these up as soon as you can. If bending down is a problem, purchase a new lightweight sweeper like a Swiffer that uses dry or wet floor sheets to remove sticky stains and food debris.
4. Sit down when you can:
Sit in a sturdy chair instead of standing when you chop or stir foods in preparation for cooking. That will help to prevent you from tiring or losing your balance.
5. Choose footwear carefully:
Walking around stocking-footed or in flimsy slippers is asking for trouble – especially on tile, linoleum or wood floors. Choose shoes or slippers with good support that cover the heel and have skid free soles.
6. Eliminate throw rugs:
If you must keep one rug in front of the sink to catch drips, it should have a non-skid backing and no fringes that could trip you up.
Preventing a fall means preventing an injury. Enlist the help of loved ones to rearrange your cabinets, secure drawers and doors, and make sure your kitchen is well lit – all of which can go a long way to remaining safe and independent. Many falls around the home occur due to vertigo, dizziness and lack of balance. If you live in the Palm Harbor, Florida area and would like to learn more about how our Balance and Fall Prevention Program could help you or a loved one, please call us today at 727-787-7077. Or to schedule a consultation with Neurologist, Dr. Allan Spiegel, MD, simply click here to select a day and time.