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Tips to keep seniors from falling this winter

Posted December 18, 2013 in Advice Column

Before winter hits the Midwest with snow, and ice starts building up on our senior loved ones’ sidewalks, paths and driveways we want to be sure we’ve taken every precautions to prevent them from slipping and falling.

We know many seniors — far too many — will be laid up for some time or even hospitalized this winter following a slip and fall during inclement weather.

Many others will suffer from a bone fracture of one kind or another, especially hip, ankle, shoulder and wrist fractures. For many of our senior loved ones, these fractures can unfortunately be life changing.

Here are some winter tips to keep loved ones safe:
•    Be sure your senior loved one wears the correct footwear, wearing shoes and boots that are not worn out, still provide good traction the heels and soles and also include special anti-skid materials to prevent slips and falls.
•    Keep the sidewalks and driveways clear of ice. Have someone (hopefully not an at-risk senior) blow or shovel the snow away as needed and apply de-icing material such as salt to reduce the ice buildup.
•    Be sure the steps leading up to the house are in good repair and are not weak or wobbly, as they will be even more difficult to navigate safely when there may be snow, water or ice buildup.
•    Be sure all walkways have a steady handrail that can be used to help your senior keep his or her balance.
•    Be sure your loved one knows not to be afraid to ask for help if needed.
•    Prevention takes a little planning and possibly some acceptance that the risk is higher. You may not be able to keep your senior loved one from falling this winter, but when you follow these tips you may be able to prevent a serious injury from occurring or provide help before a simple fall becomes something more serious in the cold.

If you’re looking for a safe place for the winter for your senior loved one, we would be happy to show you what Crestview Nursing and Rehabilitation has to offer. Call us today for a tour.

Everyone from Crestview Nursing and Rehabilitation wishes you and yours a safe and warm holiday and a happy New Year.

Information provided by Jaime Roelfs, Marketing Director, Crestview Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 2401 Des Moines St., Webster City, 515-832-2727.

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