As part of National Falls Awareness Week 20-24 June, Action for Blind People would like to offer some simple ways people with sight loss can make their homes safer to help prevent falls.
According to Age UK, which runs National Falls Awareness Week, people in later life who have sight loss are not only more likely to fall, but are also at increased risk of multiple falls.
It is vital that people make their homes as safe and friendly as possible for blind and partially sighted people. Action for Blind People encourages readers to follow these simple tips, which can help reduce the risks of falls within the home:
Ensure floors have a non-glare, non-slip surface, especially in the kitchen and bathroom. Where needed, put non-skid mats in the bathtub and on the floor to create a safer surface.
Move large pieces of furniture out of the main through put area and remove or tape down electrical cords.
Mark the edges of steps and stairs in a contrasting colour and texture to make them easily visible. Extend the handrails beyond the end of the stairs for extra safety.
If door thresholds are not flush to the floor, mark them with contrasting colour.
Replace worn down carpeting and floor covering, and either tape down or remove area rugs.
Simple changes can go a long way in reducing falls for visually impaired people. For assistance and to learn how to get personal support, please visit www.actionforblindpeople.org.uk.
Sharon Meadows, Operations Manager: North East by email