How to Prevent Falls in a Nursing Home
When placing a loved one in a nursing home you expect that they will be provided the highest quality of care, or at least that’s what the pamphlet promised. Unfortunately, our line of business has taught us, that’s not always the case.
Did you know that between 50 and 75 percent of residents fall each year while under the care of nursing home employees? These preventable falls lead to the death of about 1800 residents each year.
In order to prevent a fall from happening to someone you love, follow these simple, yet effective steps:
1: Provide multiple sources of light
Nightlights aren’t just for young children. Make sure you place lamps and plug in nightlights around the room so loved one’s are able to see obstacles that may be in their way, if they need to get up overnight for any reason.
2: Keep a list of medications
Knowing what medications a loved one is on can help prevent falls. You can even take the list of medications to your doctor, and ask that they review them and see if certain medications interfere with others. Sometimes, a negative reaction to medications can result in a fall.
3: Install safety devices
It’s important to have safety rails throughout a residents’ room to provide him or her with support and stability while moving throughout their space. When testing a safety rail, make sure it’s sturdy enough for someone to grab on to. If the room doesn’t have safety rails think about investing in devices like life alert to ensure your loved one is heard if they fall.
4: Introduce balance exercises
Simple yet effective exercises can improve an elderly person’s balance, in order to prevent falls. Activities such as walking and tai chi are known to increase balance and coordination. Practicing how to land safely is also something you can do with your loved one so they are prepared just in case.
What to do if your loved one has fallen
Do not try and pick them up. Although it may be your first reaction, people who have fallen may have suffered a serious injury and picking them up could be fatal. Your first step should be to call 911. It is important that a nursing home resident is checked out by a doctor, no matter the severity of the fall.
How The Carlson Law Firm can help
When nursing homes fail to implement proper precautions to address a resident’s risk for falls, and the resident is injured or killed, family members should take action. Although some falls are unavoidable, oftentimes falls in nursing homes are a sign of nursing home negligence. Our team of nursing home neglect attorneys has handled many cases where residents have suffered serious injuries as a result of under-staffing in long-term care facilities. When staff cannot properly monitor residents, fall-related injuries are more likely to occur.
If you believe that a loved one may be the victim of nursing home neglect or abuse you should take action quickly and contact us online or call us at 800-359-5690 to set up a free consultation.
We are available to speak with you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.