10 easy steps to prevent falls
1. Be active
Exercise regularly to help build muscle strength, balance and reduce fatigue.
2. Check vision
Have regular, comprehensive, dilated eye exams and keep prescription eyeglasses up-to-date.
3. Wear shoes
Instead of walking around barefoot or in socks, always wear slippers or shoes with nonslip soles.
4. Monitor meds
Dizziness or fatigue might be linked to medications, so talk to your doctor about side effects.
5. Use support
If needed for balance and stability when walking, use a cane or walker.
6. Prevent slips
Install handholds for toilet and tub, and use a shower chair when bathing.
7. Avoid tipsiness
Drink alcohol in moderation, and know any interactions it may have with your prescription medications.
8. Omit hazards
Make sure household rooms and hallways are always well lit. Avoid throw rugs and slippery floors.
9. Take vitamin D
Ask your doctor about this supplement, which can improve muscle strength and balance.
10. Discuss risks
Get tailored advice from your health care provider about preventing falls.
Source: Eric B. Larson, MD, MPH, Vice President for Research and Health Care Innovation, Kaiser Permanente Washington; Executive Director, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute.