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Homewatch CareGivers creates guide to prevent falls among those living with dementia

Homewatch CareGivers, an international franchisor of home care services, known for its home safety and dementia care expertise, is providing a guide to limit the risk of falls among the elderly.

Homewatch CareGivers: News Releases

Homewatch CareGivers creates guide to prevent falls among those living with dementia

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo., Sept. 18, 2013 — Homewatch CareGivers, an international franchisor of home care services, known for its home safety and dementia care expertise, is providing a guide to limit the risk of falls among the elderly.

One-third of adults over the age of 65 falls every year, and falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths for seniors. Additionally, older adults living with dementia are up to 60 percent more likely to experience a fall. This raises their risk of sustaining an injury, which can lead to hospitalizations and/or immobility.

To help limit these risks, Homewatch CareGivers created 10 Tips for Preventing Dementia-Related Falls. The company wanted to release the tips ahead of World Alzheimer’s Action Day (Sept. 21) and National Falls Prevention Awareness Day (Sept. 22 ). The guide provides helpful tips to offer guidance to the thousands of American caregivers assisting aging loved ones who are living with dementia.

“Falls are a major, yet preventable, threat to the independence and health of older adults, especially those living with dementia,” said Jennifer Tucker, vice president at Homewatch CareGivers. “Armed with these falls prevention tips, family members can reduce the risk of falls and make a huge difference in the lives of their loved ones.”

Seniors are five times more likely to be hospitalized from a fall than from any other cause. Knowing signs, symptoms and prevention strategies can help avoid unnecessary hospitalizations.

“Falls among the elderly can be caused by a variety of risk factors, such as medication side effects, physical weakness, gait and balance deficit, and unsafe home environments,” added Dr. Jette Hogenmiller, executive director of quality and outcomes at Homewatch CareGivers. “People with dementia are at an especially high risk of falling due to memory loss, poor judgment and visual misperception, which are often associated with the condition.”

Drawing from over three decades of experience, Homewatch CareGivers has assembled the following falls prevention tips for caregivers:

Clear walking paths inside the home. People living with dementia may have a hard time recognizing the danger of things like loose rugs or electrical cords stretched across the floor. Eliminating tripping hazards and keeping walkways clear can help prevent falls.

Arrange for adequate lighting. Dementia can damage the visual system and cause illusions and misperceptions. Ensure the home has enough lighting in every room to reduce visual complications. People with dementia might misinterpret what they see, so minimizing dark areas is critical.

 

Keep important things by the bed. A major issue for people living with dementia is confusion at night. Restless nights can leave them tired and unsteady. To help prevent wandering at night, keep important items on a bedside table, including water, a light source, eyeglasses, tissues and the telephone.

Consider unmet needs. Individuals living with dementia may begin to wander as their condition progresses which may lead them into unsafe areas. Wandering often signifies an unmet need a senior is trying to satisfy. For example, a man might be looking for a telephone because he used to call his wife at 5 p.m.  Instead of trying to physically stop the wandering, try distracting or redirecting the activity to avoid raising their anxiety or frustration levels.

For the complete list, please visit http://www.homewatchcaregivers.com/dementia-care-tips/preventing-dementia-related-falls.aspx

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