Why Are Older Adults Prone to Falling at Night?

Visual impairment for seniors is a significant health concern for the older population. Deteriorating vision coupled with comorbidities like cataract, glaucoma and macular degeneration which significantly affects the quality of vision have a strong correlation with the incidence of falls among seniors. These changes can make it more difficult for seniors to walk around at night, as well as lower their confidence in their ability to do so.

How can this be prevented?

• Installing a nightlight and senior wall mount buttons in each room, as well as all hallways,  will help with easy lighting during the night time.
• Increasing the wattage in the light bulbs will help improve brightness and illuminate the area better.
• Place a touch-sensitive lamp on their nightstand and be sure all hallways have switches at both ends.
• Placing a flashlight within arm’s reach of one’s favorite resting places will help keep them safe in case they experience a power outage or nod off in their favorite comfy chair.
• Make sure the pathways and hallways are free from clutter like stray objects that can become hazards in the darkness.
• Eliminate throw rugs as this has been shown to be a frequent cause of falls
• Keep floors dry to avoid slips

How can you reduce nighttime falls and slips?

• Take the time to identify your loved one’s greatest nighttime fall risks.
• Installing a safety frame or grab bars around the toilet can help improve the ability to sit and stand without a mishap.
• Keeping all assistive devices like canes, walkers or crutches close to the bed for easy reach and use.
• Also, having a commode in the bedroom could help reduce the need for a long trip down to the bathroom
• Caregivers should also equip seniors with slippers or socks that have traction, to help stabilize balance on slick surfaces.
• Repair or stabilize any furniture that could easily tip or break.
• Review medications for side effects that cause dizziness or restlessness, which would increase their chance of nighttime falls.



Fall Prevention