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Basic Home Safety
As your daily routines change, it’s a good idea to review your environment and daily activities to make sure your home is as safe as possible. Talk to your Nurse or Social Worker if you would like more information about safety in your home.
Preventing Falls
Hospice patients are expected to become weaker as time goes on. These changes can put them at risk for falls, which are upsetting and can cause injuries. There are important things you can do to prevent falls:
→ Clear pathways of clutter.
→ Remove rugs or tack them down.
→ Use night lights in the bedroom, bathroom, and hallways.
→ Use grab bars in the shower, tub, and toilet areas.
→ Put a non-skid mat in the tub or shower.
→ Encourage standing up slowly after eating or resting.
→ If getting the person to the bathroom is becoming difficult, try a bedside commode instead.
→ If a walker or cane has been prescribed, use it.
→ Pay special attention to safety when someone starts taking a new medication, as
this may cause slowed reflexes or dizziness.
→ Ask for help when needed.
Moving and Lifting
Avoid injury by paying attention to some basic guidelines when moving or lifting the person you are caring for.
→ Do not try to move anyone if there are any doubts about doing it safely.
→ If there is a hospital bed, move it to a comfortable working height.
→ Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes and keep the feet shoulder width apart.
→ When lifting, bend your knees and use the muscles in your arms and legs, not your back.
→ Do not jerk suddenly; use a smooth, fluid motion. Stand as close as possible with your toes pointing to the direction you want to move the person.
→ Do not twist your body to turn.
→ Whenever possible, use a sheet under the person to lift or turn.
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