In addition to making your home safer, you might consider assistive devices that can reduce the risk of falling and help you to carry out activities of daily living in a safer manner
- Canes and walkers will provide stability; walkers provide more stability and support than canes because they spread your body weight over a wide area. These devices can increase independence and minimize your fear of falling. Canes and walkers come in many forms and will need to be fitted to you; therefore, they should be chosen in consultation with a physiotherapist, who can also provide instruction on how to use them properly.
- A seat lift is a device you put under you while sitting in a chair that helps push you up when you need to get up.
- Hip protectors have been shown to substantially reduce the number of hip fractures, particularly in the frail elderly. The protectors are designed to act as shock absorbers and/or to disperse any shock from impact away from that point where the thigh bone meets the pelvis. Hip protectors come in a variety of designs and are made of many different materials. The softer padded ones can be comfortable and quite discreet, but both the softer ones and the hard caps are effective.
- Reaching aids come in different lengths – an occupational therapist can help figure out the best aids for you to use.
Most large communities have falls prevention programs to help raise awareness of the factors that increase one’s chances of falling. Call your local community information centre to access falls prevention resources.