Slip and fall accidents are a public health issue. Each year about 3 million people head to emergency rooms as a result of slips and falls, according to the data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While not all slip and fall accidents happen at home, you should have enough information on how to prevent them wherever you and your family may find yourself. Kids can slip and fall when attending parties. They can also have an accident while swimming in the neighborhood pool or when playing at the playground.
There are many places where accidents can happen, but the fact is that the majority of slips and falls happen in the one place that we feel is most secure — our homes. So what are some ways that you can make your home as safe as possible for your kids?
Do a Routine Clean-Up
Our homes need constant cleaning. However, there are areas in our house that receive the least amount of attention. These areas include sidewalks and walkways. Changes in the weather can cause cracks in these surfaces. Garden pathways may have overgrown roots, weeds, and even twigs from fallen trees. When overlooked, these structural deficiencies and clutter can cause slip and fall accidents.
Be Wary of Seasonal Changes
As soon as the weather changes, make sure you make necessary adjustments. If heavy rains cause a collection of water near the entry of your home, use another entrance until the pathway is clear. If you have trees in your garden, clear out any twigs that may fall in your way on and off the property. In the meantime, make sure to let your kids know what areas to avoid for their safety.
Secure Slippery Surfaces with Carpets and Grip Materials
If you have slippery areas in your home, cover them up with carpets and grippers. Make sure to place them in entryways and other slip zones. Rugs work wonders because people brush off their feet to remove any dirt or mud, which may cause them to slip. Grippers are best placed on the stairs. Of course, rugs can become a slippery surface too — anchor them with rug tape or an anti-slip underlay.
Use Lights at Night
If you often have to go to the bathroom at night, make sure that you have adequate lighting. It would also be wise to check and replace burnt bulbs regularly.
Practice Daily Clean Up
Having good housekeeping practices will surely make your home safe. Clearing clutter from the floor, such as tissues and toys, can decrease your risk of slips and falls. Set a routine cleaning schedule to make sure that you properly clean surfaces, especially in the kitchen where oil splatters can cause slips.
Keep Electrical Cords and Wires in Check
We live in a highly connected world. So, it is no longer unusual to find chargers plugged into almost every socket. A growing number of people are working from home, and workstations are often cluttered with cords and wires. Just imagine, your kids are walking towards the kitchen, phone in hand, eyes glued to Instagram, headphones in, and there’s an electrical cord in their path. It can cause a severe accident. Secure those wires and cables. Tell your kids to put away chargers after using them and always pay attention to where you’re walking.
Organize Your Things
Sometimes slip and fall accidents happen because of your home layout. Make sure that there is always ample space for people to walk through. Don’t place items where they can block the proper flow of traffic. For instance, your workstation should not be set in areas where it can block a walkway. You may want to put it in a separate room with less foot traffic.
One of the essential safety tips to practice at home is to help everyone understand the importance of safety. Let your kids know that you will not be able to watch them 24/7 and that they should learn how to stay safe at all times — even when you are not around.