The danger of falling

Continuing the conversation and prevention of falls in 2018.

As we think about overall health, it is important to keep in mind that falls continue to be a leading cause of injury such as head injuries, hip fractures and even death in the United States. In the U.S., one in four older adults fall every year. In an effort to provide more information on the dangers of falling the National Council on Aging has created a TIPS for Living Life To Its Fullest information sheet with several suggestions on how to reduce your risk of falling:

  • Remove clutter in your home
    • Ensure furniture is arranged to provide plenty of room to move freely
  • Be careful when there are hazards in the home such as rugs and pets
    • Secure throw rugs firmly to the floor
  • Never stand on chairs or similar items
    • Be sure you can safely and easily get to item you use on a regular basis
  • Do not use towel bars, sink edges for support as they could come loose
    • Install grab bars in locations that are helpful for you
    • Install nonslip strips in bath tubs or show
  • Use a nightlight in the bedroom and bathroom
    • Add lighting to unsafe areas such as the basement stairs or routine work areas

The truth is most falls can be prevented through:

  • Balance and exercise program
  • Talking with your health care provider
  • Medication review with doctor and/or pharmacist
  • Regular vision and hearing check ups
  • Home modifications
  • Talking with family members

Fall prevention is so important that each year on September 22 the National sponsors the National Falls Prevention Awareness Day which unities caregivers, physicians, families, and professionals in understanding their role in fall prevention. If you are interested in learning more about fall prevention and to support efforts near you please visit the National Council on Aging Prevention Awareness Day website.

To learn more about Government and Public Policy programs offered through Michigan State University Extension, please contact Emily Proctor, Tribal Extension Educator with questions or comments at (231)-439-8927 or

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