Tips for the Elderly to Prevent Injuries this Winter

With winter months approaching, it’s time to put the golf clubs and short sleeve shirts away, and break out the winter coats.  It’s also time to start thinking about winter safety, especially when it comes to the elderly.

According the the National Institute of Health, more than 1 in 3 Americans over the age of 65 slips and falls each year.  It’s the number one cause of injury related death, and more often than not, it happens in the winter months.  So with snow and ice just around the corner, and if moving to Florida is not an option, it’s a good idea to review some tips on keeping yourself safe this winter.

Buy shoes with a non-skid sole or with good traction to get a better grip when walking on icy sidewalks.  Leather and plastic soled shoes have bad winter traction,  Choose a show or boot with a thick rubber sole.
If you are still driving in the winter, be sure to equip your vehicle with a good winter snow tire.
Check for icy railings and avoid icy and uncleared sidewalks.  If you must remove snow, it is best to use a snow blower, rather than risk trying to shovel your own walk or driveway.
Take extra time to map out the best route to get where you are going and give yourself extra travel time if possible.  Be sure to ask for directions if you are unsure of the best route.
If you must walk over an icy surface, bending your knees and taking slower steps will reduce the risk of falling.

As always, safety begins at home.  As mentioned above, make sure drive and walkway around your home are clear and salted.  We suggest using rock salt or some other substance with a de-icing compound.  If needed, ask a neighbor or family member to help you out.

Mandy has been writing stories and articles from a very young age on any flat surface she could find.