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ADRC recognizes National Falls Prevention Awareness month

FLORENCE, Wis. — September is National Falls Prevention Awareness Month.

Did you know that falling is the leading cause of accidental death among Wisconsinites 65 or older? Six out of every 10 falls happen at home.

Among older adults, falls are the leading cause of injury related deaths, unintentional injuries, and hospital admissions for trauma. Falls can take a serious toll on older adults’ quality of life and independence.

There are changes you can make to your home that will help you avoid falls and increase your safety.

Stairways and pathways

— Hold handrails going both down and up the stairs. If you are carrying something, hold it in one hand and use the handrail with the other.

— Make sure there is good lighting with light switches at the top and bottom of stairs.

— Keep areas where you walk tidy. Don’t leave books, papers, clothes, and shoes on the floor or stairs.

Bathrooms

— Mount grab bars near toilets and on both the inside and outside of your tub and shower.

— Place non-skid mats, strips, or carpet on all surfaces that may get wet.

Bedrooms

— Put night lights and light switches close to your bed.

— Keep a flashlight near your bed.

— Keep a phone near your bed.

Living areas

— Keep cords and wires away from walking paths.

— Secure all carpets and area rugs to the floors.

— Don’t stand on a chair or table to reach something that’s too high. Use a “reach stick” or ask for help.

— Don’t let your dog or cat trip you. Know where your pet is whenever you’re standing or walking.

Contact the Aging and Disability Resource Center of Florence County for more information on falls prevention, home safety checklists, medical alert systems and health promotion activities in the community. The ADRC is in the lower level of the Florence County Courthouse, 501 Lake Ave. in Florence. Call, 715-528-4890 or go to www.florencecountywi.com, click on Departments then Aging and Disability Resource Center.

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