Importance of Slip and Fall Prevention in a Nursing Home
Nursing homes must implement and enforce slip and fall prevention measures to protect their senior residents from slips and fall accidents. That way, their residents can avoid the serious injuries, functional decline, and lower quality of life that often occurs when elderly people fall.
If your loved one has been injured by a slip and fall incident in a nursing home facility, don’t hesitate to consult our experienced Atlanta slip and fall attorneys at Allen & Scofield Injury Lawyers, LLC. We can perform a thorough investigation and ensure your senior’s rights are protected. Contact us at (404) 419-6674 today.
Slip and Fall Risk Factors
Even though seniors are already more likely to slip and fall than other age groups, there are certain elderly individuals that are more susceptible to falling than others.
Those with impaired vision have a difficult time gauging depth or distance and are more likely to slip and fall as a result. Cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration are a few examples of eye problems among older adults.
Bone and Muscle Weakness
Physical weakness is one of the most common causes of falls in seniors. Diabetes, osteoporosis, and vitamin D deficiency may all contribute to this issue.
Certain Medical Conditions
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), dementia, and arthritis are all common senior conditions that often lead to slips and falls.
Benzodiazepines are medications that are used to treat a variety of senior conditions, such as anxiety, insomnia, and seizures and include Valium, Xanax, and Klonopin. Benzodiazepines greatly increase the likelihood of slip and fall incidents.
How Nursing Homes Can Prevent Falls
There are a number of ways that nursing homes can reduce the risk of slips and falls including:
Fainting is a common issue in nursing home environments. It is often the result of a sudden drop in blood pressure and side-effect of many medications. Nursing home staff should keep a close eye on patients who have fainted in the past as well as those that are taking new medications.
It’s important for nursing home residents to get up and move because sitting for long periods of times can lead to pain and discomfort. A lack of movement can also cause muscle weakness, which may increase the risk of slipping and falling.
Ensure Proper Footwear
While older adults may feel more comfortable in socks, slippers, or going barefoot, they should wear properly fitting strap-on shoes or athletic shoes with rubber soles. These types of shoes offer good traction and significantly reduce the risk of slipping and falling.
Nursing homes should offer a variety of daily exercise programs that are aimed at improving the balance, strength, and gait of residents. It’s a good idea to vary the exercise programs so that seniors don’t get bored and they are motivated to keeping participating.
Hire Additional Staff
Unfortunately, many nursing homes are understaffed. With more staff members to keep their eyes on residents at high-risk times like the mornings, evenings, and mealtimes, slips and fall can be prevented.
Inspect the Environment Regularly
Nursing home staff should get into the habit of inspecting the environment on a regular basis, They should look for hazards like unstable furniture, slippery or uneven surfaces, poor lighting, and clutter.
Contact Allen & Scofield Injury Lawyers, LLC
If your loved one has experienced a slip and fall in a nursing home, our highly skilled Atlanta slip and fall accident lawyers are an invaluable resource. We can help you figure out who is liable and hold the appropriate party accountable for their negligence. Most importantly, we can help reduce your senior’s risk of falling again. Contact us today at (404) 419-6674.