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Anyone can have a fall but as we get older our risk of falling increases. Read our tips to help prevent falls and what to do if you are fearful of falling again. 

Preventing falls 

  • Stay active to keep your muscles strong and to improve your balance. You don't have to go to the gym, simple tasks like gardening, regular housework and walking can boost energy levels and improve coordination and balance 
  • Avoid dehydration which can cause dizziness and confusion. Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day 
  • Keep your home clutter free by removing anything that may cause you to fall such as pet bowls, small furniture, electrical or phone cables. Ensure any rugs, mats and loose carpets are secured with double sided tape
  • Have the right footwear. When purchasing footwear including slippers you should check that they fasten well, are supportive, have a sturdy sole and are not loose
  • Have regular eye tests and make sure you clean your spectacles
  • Don’t rush when getting up. If you feel dizzy when you first sit up from bed, wait a couple of minutes before standing up
  • Make sure everyday objects are within easy reach. Before getting into bed, make sure you have everything you need such as a clock, water or a table lamp. Similarly, in the living area, keep items such as the remote control and telephone near you 
  • Put a non-slip rubber mat in the bathroom to provide extra grip and support 
  • Clean up any spills straight away and avoid wet floors  
  • Fit handrails and grab bars if you need help getting around your home, for example, when going up and down the stairs
  • Improve lighting by using high wattage bulbs, especially on stairs

What to do if you have a fall 

  • Don’t panic. You will be a little shocked but try to stay calm 
  • Call for help 
  • Don’t try to get up if you think you are hurt 
  • If you are not hurt, don’t rush to get up too quickly 
  • Keep warm with anything available 
  • Try to keep moving as much as you are able to 
  • Always call your GP after the fall 

Worried about falling? 

If you are worried about falling, then technology (like a pendant alarm) can be a good way to let someone know quickly that you have fallen and cannot get up. It can also support in other situations as well. 

Lifeline, monitors and alarms page 

Age UK Redbridge offer a number of strength and balance classes, including chair based exercise and tai chi, both face to face and online. If you have had a fall or are concerned about falling, you can complete the assessment form to get advice about preventing falls.  

NHS Choices has useful information on preventing falls.