One in four Ohioans age 65 and older will fall this year, and the snow and ice of an Ohio winter increase those odds. However, most falls can be prevented by understanding your risk factors and being more aware of your surroundings.
Steps to "Win Winter!" include:
- Dress Defensively - Bundle up, but make sure you can see in all directions and move easily and freely. Wear sturdy shoes or boots with good treads. Wear sunglasses to reduce glare on surfaces.
- Walk Wisely - Slow down and pay attention to how and where you're walking. Allow extra time to get to where you're going. Keep sidewalks and stairs outside your home clean of ice and snow, and keep cords and clutter out of walkways inside.
- Pack Power - Carry a small baggie of salt, sand or kitty litter in your coat for traction on icy paths. Replace worn rubber tips on canes, walkers and crutches.
- Keep Connected - Carry a cell phone and designate someone to call for help if you need it. Let loved ones know when you are leaving the house and when you expect to be back; call them after you return home.
- Healthy Habits - Do some light stretching before you venture out. Drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration, which can affect your balance. Stay active all winter to maintain strength and balance.