With falls prevention tips, and local activities and support for those over 65, you can help reduce the risk of slips, trips and falls.
30 per cent of people older than 65, and 50 per cent of people older than 80, are at risk of falling at least once a year. As well as injuries from the fall itself, people who fall can also suffer psychological problems, such as a loss of confidence and fear of falling again, loss of mobility, an increase in dependency, hypothermia, pressure-related injuries and infection.
To find out if you are at risk of falling, you can take a simple test to see whether it might be a good idea to discuss the risk of falling with your GP.
There are several easy things that you can do to reduce the risk of a fall.
|check that slippers and shoes fit properly||keep the home clutter free|
|ask your GP for a medication review||remove loose rugs and mats|
|have a sight and hearing check each year||make sure the home is well lit|
|check the rubber ferrule on the bottom of walking sticks for wear||use non-slip mats inside the bath or shower|
|dress warmly in cool or cold weather||keep the home warm|
Local support and services
If you fall you should always consult your doctor, who may refer you to the falls prevention service in your area to help prevent falls in the future. The service can also be accessed through your district nurse, podiatrist, warden, social worker or care manager, along with some local voluntary organisations, such as Age UK. If you have regular contact with one of the above, you can ask them to refer you.
- North Yorkshire Sport's "strong and steady" programme provides support to encourage people to become more active to reduce the risk of falls. For more information contact North Yorkshire Sport on 01423 226303. Sessions will provide information about related topics, such as healthy eating, winter warmth, exercise and how to prevent falls.
- Harrogate, Knaresborough and Craven falls prevention service is based at Harrogate hospital and the Hambleton and Richmondshire falls prevention service is based in Northallerton. You can contact your GP to be considered for referral for an assessment, which can lead to referrals to other health professionals, advice about safety in your home or equipment you could use, and other support to help you stay healthy and independent.
Age UK have published a strength and balance exercises for healthy ageing document, to help you keep fit and reduce the risk of a fall.
You can read our tips for preventing falls in winter weather (pdf / 114 KB).
Also, see the NHS Choices pages below for more information on falls prevention: