Preventing Slips, Trips & Falls : A Home Safety Checklist

Use these tips to keep your home hazard-free.

Hindsight is 20/20 when it comes to most clumsy accidents. Perhaps it was the boxes you left on the stairs or a loose floorboard that led to a fall. Each year, millions of American are injured due to slip and fall accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries.

The truth is that most falls are preventable with some awareness and taking the right precautions. The National Safety Council recommends the following safety measures:

Be a neat freak.
Removing hazards from areas where you walk is the first step to a safer home. Keep the clutter off the floor and stairs. Make sure all the cords from your electronics are tucked away. Also, if you spill something, clean it up immediately. Leaving liquid on a hard surface poses a slipping hazard. 

Inspect the environment around you.
Check out your steps, walkways and lights in and around your home. Maintain good lighting in walking areas. Keep tabs on the condition of sidewalks, stairs and floors. Be sure to fix any defects and clean up any debris that could cause someone to trip. Additionally, arrange your furniture so there are clear walking paths.

Use the right equipment
In the kitchen and bathroom, use non-skid rugs. On the stairs and porch, install handrails and if you have to to reach a high shelf, stand on a sturdy step-stool, not a chair or table. Also, protect yourself by wearing sensible shoes.

Because some accidents are inevitable, the staff at St. Petersburg General Hospital is ready to treat your injuries and help you recuperate. For more information about emergency care, please visit us online or call our free Consult-A-Nurse® service at 1-888-741-5122.

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