General News

Health unit reminds the public to be aware of fall hazards

December 1, 2022   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit is reminding the public that the risk for a fall increases with age and declining health, and there are steps that can be taken to prevent falls.

November was Fall Prevention Month and reminds people to be cautious and avoid situations that may cause an accident.

Falls are a significant public health issue and are the leading cause of injury-related deaths in Simcoe Muskoka. There were 19,400 emergency department visits, 2,000 hospitalizations, and 100 deaths in the region due to falls in 2020.

While a slip and fall can happen to anyone, for older adults a fall can be life-altering and result in the loss of independence.

When thinking about fall hazards, scatter rugs, stairs, or ice typically come to mind. However, there are other hazards that you should be aware of to address risks in and around the home.

When it comes to being aware of the danger, safety hazards are only one piece of the puzzle. Other factors figure in, such as a person’s physical environment, health behaviours or choices, access to health, dental and pharma care, as well as access to social and physical activities.

To prevent falls, it is important to consider how to make improvements to as many changeable risk factors as possible, both in an individual’s workplace and personal life.

A fall prevention check list on the SMDHU website lists many ways you can prevent a fall.

This includes areas around the home like walkways, the garage, the entrance way to the home, your stairs, and your floors.

The list also includes things to look for in the general living space, the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and basement.

By going through this checklist you can find areas in the home that need to be addressed to make your home environment safer and prevent slips and falls.

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