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Staying Safe

Elderly man with head injury

Staying Safe

There are lots of potential hazards in our homes but if you're aware of the danger areas and unsafe habits, you are more likely to be able to keep yourself safe. There are preventive measures you can take and sources of help and advice.

More accidents take place in the home than anywhere else, particularly in the kitchen and on the stairs. It’s important to keep your home well-lit and clutter free to avoid falls.

To ensure you remain safe at home, you may like to think about some of the preventative measures:

Assistive technology
Securing your home
Reducing the risk of fire

Avoiding Falls

Lady doing jigsaw

Improving safety in the home can help prevent you from having falls and injuring yourself, whilst allowing you to continue to live independently.

Falls, slips and trips can lead to broken hips or wrists and other injuries, and are a leading cause of disability among the older population. Falls in the home can result in ill health, lengthy hospital stays, residential care, loss of independence, and can greatly affect your quality of life.

Various aspects of the home environment can be improved to reduce the risk of having a fall. Family, friends, neighbours and carers can help make things safer for you while allowing you to stay independent and self-sufficient.  Following are some tips on avoiding falls:

  • Make sure that the hallway and stairs have working lights - if possible replace the bulbs with low energy bulbs and keep light on overnight

  • Wear slippers with an appropriate heel so that they stay firmly on the feet

  • Regular gentle exercise can help reduce the risk and fear of falling.  Exercise such as Tai Chi is particularly helpful for improving balance

  • Have grab rails installed at key sites around the home or at the entrance to the home

  • Fasten down any torn bits of carpet or lino

  • Avoid tripping over the edge of rugs by either removing them or fastening down the edges

  • Review medication with your GP or pharmacist

  • Ensure that you look after your feet and ask for a referral to a podiatrist if you are worried about your feet

  • Speak to your occupational therapist who can give you lots of advice

Doorstep Safety

Be careful who you invite into your home. Everyone is vulnerable to cold callers and it is often hard to say ‘no’. Research shows that this is particularly true for elderly consumers who are often targeted by rogue salespeople and people offering to carry out work on their home or garden.

Trading Standards offer a free sticker that goes on your front door with the message “we do not buy or sell at the front door”. Traders who ignore this message may be committing a criminal offence. You may also collect a sticker from Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline by calling on 08454 04 05 06.

For further information or if you have an enquiry relating to rogue traders, cowboy builders, telephone and mail scams please contact Trading Standards.

Recognising and reporting concerns

Lady being abused by carer

Abuse can happen anywhere – in a residential or nursing home, in someones own home, in a hospital, in the workplace, at a day centre or educational establishment, in supported housing or in the street.

Who to call

If you have a concern, suspicion or allegation that an adult is being subjected to harm, abuse or neglect you should contact:

  • Non-urgent referrals - contact customer services
  • Emergency referrals -
  • If you think a crime has taken place, you may call the Police on 101 for non-emergencies or 999 in an emergency.

If your concern relates to a child or young person, please visit safeguarding children

More information can be found on Peterborough City Council's Report a Concern page.

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