Home Safety Checklist
Each year, thousands of older Americans fall at home. Many of them are seriously injured and some are disabled. Falls are often due to hazards that are easy to overlook but many times, easy to fix. Interim HealthCare has developed a checklist that can be used to help you find and fix hazards in your home.
Common Hazzards That Cause Falls
This list identifies most of the common hazards that could cause falls that may result in serious injuries, particularly among the elderly. Homes come in all manner of shapes and sizes. If something does not apply to your home, move on to the next question. For example, if you live in a one story house, questions relating to stairs may not apply to you. We suggest you print the home safety checklist and fill it in as you look around your home by entering a check mark against each item.
- Grab bars are on the bathroom walls, near the toilet or along the bathtub or shower
- A slip-resistant rug is next to bathtub or shower
- A mounted or suction liquid soap dispenser is on the bathtub/shower wall
- Non-skid adhesive textured strips are on the bathtub/shower floor
- A sturdy plastic seat (shower chair) is placed in the bathtub
- There is a raised toilet seat or a toilet seat with armrests to maintain balance getting on or off the toilet.
- An extra- long mirror is over the sink so it can be used when sitting
- Clutter is cleared from the floor so that nothing is in the way
- A lamp, flashlight and telephone are within easy reach near the bed
- Nightlights are placed along the path from the bedroom to the bath
- A raised mattress is available to get in and out of bed easily
Living Area Safety
- Furniture is arranged to create clear paths between rooms
- Low coffee tables, magazine racks, footrests, and plants are removed from pathways in rooms used with walkers or crutches.
- Light switches are easily accessible at entrances to rooms
- Glow in the dark switches or sound-activated lamps are available
- Loose rugs are secured with double faced tape or slip resistant backing.
- In rooms with wall-to-wall carpeting, carpet is secure and there are no wrinkles or raised areas.
- Electric appliance and telephone cords are out of your way but not put under rugs
- There are no wobbly chairs or tables which can be leaned upon
- Rugs are secured on concrete, ceramic or marble floors
- There are no loose wood floorboards that need repair
- Furniture is firm, high and has armrests to assist in standing
- A cordless phone is close by so there is no danger of hurrying to reach the phone
- There are no throw rugs
- There is no liquid, grease or food spilled on the floor that needs to be cleaned up
- Food, dishes and cooking equipment are stored at an easy-to-reach, waist high level
- A step stool with a handrail is available to reach upper cabinets
- Non-skid floor wax has been used on the floor
- A counter-top toaster oven is available to avoid leaning over to or trying to reach an oven
- Stairways are well lit
- Steps have stair treads
- Stairways have a strong handrail, preferably on both sides
- Carpet is not patterned or deep pile
- Carpet is solid color to show the edges of steps more clearly
- A brightly colored piece of tape is used if there is difficulty seeing the edge of the stairs
Download the Home Safety Checklist.