AlzU Blog

Evaluating Falls Risks in a Loved One with Alzheimer's Disease Part II

There is no doubt that falling is a big risk for elderly adults with Alzheimer’s disease (AD).  The risks are even higher for those with Alzheimer’s dementia.  But the good news is that many falls are preventable. 

Here are some more tips for preventing falls in those with Alzheimer’s disease:
Ensure safety in the bathroom-the most common area of the home where falls occur is the bathroom.  Be sure that floors are kept dry and install hand grasp bars for getting in and out of the tub and using the toilet.

Ask the physician about osteoporosis screening-to prevent risks of serious injuries such as hip fractures.

Reduce clutter around the house that may contribute to falls

Be aware that eye conditions such as cataracts and glaucoma can contribute to falls risks. 

Check floors to ensure they are not slippery  

Observe for loose cords that could cause a tripping hazard

Be aware that if your loved one has fallen before he/she has a higher risk of falling again-because fear of falling can actually pose a risk for falling to happen again.

Be sure medications are being administered correctly-oftentimes medications should be taken with food to reduce side effects such as dizziness.
Have your loved one evaluated for the need for a walker or cane-to assist in maintaining balance and prevent falls.

Avoid excessive alcohol use-which can contribute to the loss of balance. Alcohol mixed with medications can cause side effects such as dizziness which can increase the risk of falls.
Ensure that your loved one has regular foot exams-pain from walking with foot ulcers or other problems such as ingrown toenails can increase the risk of falls.

Be aware of medical conditions that can cause an increased risk of falls-such as low blood pressure, arthritis, cognitive impairment, vitamin deficiencies (causing muscle weakness) and circulatory problems.

In conclusion, while falling is certainly a high risk for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the good news is that with a few safety precautions, many falls can be avoided.  Learn more about other topics for caregivers by joining our 25 topic course designed specifically for caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s disease by CLICKING HERE.

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