Protecting yourself from injury at home
03.27.20|Posted by Alison Day

Protecting yourself and others from injury when isolating 

Slips, trips and falls are a fact of life, but there are things that we can all do to prevent mishaps that may lead to injury.

We are all spending more time at home due to coronavirus, with fewer visitors to offer support and less face to face interaction with friends and family. 

During this time, it’s important to be mindful of creating a safe environment and protecting yourself and your loved ones from injury. 

There are simple steps that we can all take to significantly reduce the chances of sustaining a minor injury in the home or worsening a pre-existing condition. 

Follow the tips below for peace of mind and to protect your health or the health of another:

Sensible footwear 

In the home you should walk around barefooted if it’s safe to do so or wear shoes that encase your whole foot.

Ideally, they should have laces or Velcro to hold them in place.

Avoid wearing high heels, loose, backless or slip-on footwear. 

It’s important that your footwear has a slip-resistant sole underneath and a supportive shoe bed inside (i.e. arch support and padding). 

If your physiotherapist has recommended that you wear shoe orthotics then you should follow their advice and make sure that you use these when walking around the home. 

Mindful movements

Make sure that you put your whole foot on steps and not just on the edge of steps. 

It may be tempting to lift or carry more than you normally would if you are at home alone for long periods, but stay within your limitations and wait until you next see someone if you can. 

Avoid carrying bulky objects down the stairs that may block your vision, such as cardboard boxes or a washing basket.

If you have been given a walking aid, then make sure that you follow the advice of your physiotherapist or doctor and use it to get around, even when you are in the home. 

Strength and balance 

When you spend a long time sitting or lying down your muscles weaken. 

It’s important that you move as much as you can within the home to maintain strength and stability, even if the movements that you make are minimal and using a small space. 

If you are spending a lot of time sitting throughout the day, then try to keep moving as much as you can and work to build movement into your other daily activities.   

For example, pacing the room while you wait for the kettle to boil, standing on one leg when you're on the phone or doing squats while brushing your teeth. 

A physiotherapist could help you to create a plan to manage any conditions, mobility issues, pain or concerns you have about being at home. They can work with you to create a personalised strength building exercises programme that can help to improve your physical health and wellbeing while you stay at home. 

You can safely speak to a trained Ascenti Physiotherapist from your own home by using our videocall technology or the phone if needed – simply book an appointment here.

Create a safe environment 

Follow these simple steps to create a fall safe environment in your home:

  • Clean up spills, clutter and hazards straight away
  • Repair or remove tripping hazards such as rugs and draft excluders
  • Don’t lean on furniture with wheels
  • Light your home properly so that you can see where you are going at night 
  • Avoid alcohol or consider reducing the amount that you drink
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help from a friend, relative or carer – the NHS have made provisions for supporting those who need help whilst staying at home for long periods 

Take care of your mental health 

You must take care of your mental health as well as your physical health when staying at home for long periods of time. 

Creating a daily routine can help you to build some normality into your day and you should make the effort to continue with activities that you enjoy and can still do in the home safely. 

Try to avoid watching the news all day and take time to relax and connect with others using technology or a phone. 

Read more about managing stress and anxiety here

Speak to someone if you notice a change 

If you are falling more often than usual and feel that something has changed, it may be time to check your health and wellbeing with your GP or a physiotherapist. 

You can safely speak to a trained Ascenti Physiotherapist from your own home by using our videocall technology or the phone if needed – simply book an appointment here

Get in touch

Call our central booking line on - 0330 678 0850