Slips, Trips & Falls…How Safe Is Your Household?
According to statistics, the most significant cause of accidents in the home isn’t what you might think. When it comes to the numbers, all those super dangerous things you watch out for like the electricity points, boiling hot water, and unsafe chemicals pale into insignificance when it comes to slips, trips and falls. In fact, falls are also the leading cause of death in the home – an astonishing 6,000 people are killed every year as a direct result of them. It makes you think, right? So, today, I’m going to drill down a little deeper into the stats and reveal the areas of your home that pose the biggest risk. Let’s get started right away.
Who is at risk?
The truth is that everyone is at risk in the home, but some are definitely in more danger than others. Small children are involved in an incredible 3.4 million accidents every year, and falls are amongst the biggest issue. But it’s even more of a problem for the elderly – 1 in 3 Americans over the age of 65 will need medical treatment or physical rehabilitation after a slip, trip or fall. So, don’t just check your own home once you have finished this post – make sure your parents are OK, too.
Of course, one of the biggest dangers in the home is simple clutter. It’s not just being house proud that should make you tidy up junk and objects on a regular basis – it’s a big safety issue, too. Your best bet is to find a home for everything and get into the habit of putting it in the same place every time you use it. Storage rooms, cupboards – anything you can think of. You should even have a system of storing your mail as soon as it comes through the door – a small letter on a slippery surface could result in a big tumble.
Rugs and mats
Rugs and mats might look nice and cozy, but the reality is they are incredibly dangerous. If you place your foot on a mat at the wrong speed or angle, don’t be surprised if you end up on the floor. You have two choices – either remove them completely and go for a full carpet, or get some rug tape to ensure they stay fixed on the floor.
The stairs are in your home very dangerous, of course, but once you get used to going up and down several times a day, you forget about the danger altogether. If you have kids, make sure you have stair gates at both top and bottom of the stairs, and if you struggle to walk well, or have elderly parents, make sure that the side rails are safe. It’s also important to keep an eye on your carpet – it can often come loose and cause a severe accident.
Slippery flooring is all the rage these days. But whether you have beautiful, natural stone tiles or have sanded down your floorboards, there’s no denying they are a danger. There isn’t much you can do, other than get into the habit of making sure everyone always wears shoes, slippers, or gripped socks. Alternatively, you could insist on barefoot policy for anyone coming into your home! Stay safe out there, folks!