Snow, sleet and icy roads and walkways can make getting around not only challenging, but dangerous. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospital visits, and wintry conditions raise the potential of taking a life-changing tumble. Here are some simple tips to help you be Winter STEADY:
- Allow extra time to get places in the winter. If you don’t feel safe, ask for help.
- When conditions are icy, walk with a buddy or carry a cell phone.
- Assume that surfaces that look slippery are slippery and find another way.
- Keep rock salt, sand and a shovel available near entrances to your home. Carry a small bag of sand or rock salt in your coat pocket for when you are away from home.
- Don’t try to walk in more than an inch of snow.
- Bundle up, but make sure you can see in all directions and move freely.
- Wear winter boots that fit well and provide more traction than tennis or dress shoes.
- Check that the rubber tips on canes and walkers are in good repair.
Your home can also use a winter tune-up to keep you warm, cozy and safe from falls. You can increase the lighting in your home with extra lamps and by using the highest-wattage bulbs recommended for your fixtures. If you use space heaters, keep them and all cords out of walkways. If you use throw rugs on cold floors, secure them to the floor with tape.
With a few precautions, you winter can be safe and falls-free.
Source: Steady U
Visit our website for more information about winter safety for older adults and people with disabilities. Council on Aging is a supporter of Ohio’s Steady U campaign to prevent falls among older Ohioans. For more information about fall prevention, visit the Steady U website.