Preventing Falls

Elderly and people with disabilities that affect movement and coordination are at risk for falling at home. Falls can be dangerous causing broken bones or other complications. Fortunately, steps can be taken to prevent falls and make the home a safer place.


If you’ve fallen in the past, be sure to speak with your doctor and get checked for injuries. In addition, speaking with your doctor about fall prevention can provide valuable insights. All health care providers take preventing falls in elderly and disabled people seriously as they can lead to bigger health concerns.

Avoiding Falls at Home

Some simple lifestyle changes can help prevent falls at home. Begin by following these tips:

·      Promptly clean or mop up spills

·      Get rid of clutter, trim fraying carpet, avoid trailing wires

·      Use non-slip mats and rugs

·      Use high watt bulbs so you can see everything

·      Set up your home to keep climbing, stretching, and bending are kept to a minimum and to avoid bumping into things

·      Get help to do things that would be unsafe to do alone

·      Wear shoes or slippers with non-slip soles

·      Avoid wearing clothes that trail and may trip you

·      Wear shoes that fit well and support your ankle

·      Take care of your feet

Strength and Balance Training

Improving strength and balance is one of the best ways to prevent falls. Simple activities such as walking or dancing can greatly improve strength and balance. You may be able to find specialized programs at your local gym or community center. Before beginning and conditioning program, speak with your doctor to ensure the program is tailored specifically to your needs.


Another option to consider is Tai Chi. Tai Chi is a series of gentle movements done in coordination and a specific sequence to make a form. While it is a martial art, no physical contact is involved. Many elderly people find Tai Chi quite beneficial.


Many elderly and disabled people are on several long-term medications. Be sure you review the complete list of your medications at least once a year to be sure they’re still right for you. In some cases, the side effects of a medication may increase the chances of a fall and your doctor may make adjustments to reduce that risk. If you haven’t had your medications reviewed in more than year, consider setting up an appointment with your doctor.

Vision Check

Poor vision can add to the risk of falling. Even if you already wear glasses, if you feel like you’re having trouble seeing potential tripping hazards, get a vision test. While certain vision problems can be treated, many can be corrected with glasses or surgery.

Assess Your Home for Hazards

While you can begin this process yourself, a healthcare professional with expertise in fall prevention can increase home safety. This professional will visit your home and assess both the living conditions and how you interact with your living environment. Based on this assessment, they will recommend ways to make the living environment safer. Some suggestions may include bathroom bars or a personal safety alarm.

Avoiding Alcohol

Alcohol can cause loss of coordination and exaggerate the side effects of some medications. These effects can increase the likelihood of falling. Reducing or removing alcohol intake can reduce the risk of falling as well as decrease the risk of developing osteoporosis.



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Please note: VAT is removed in the checkout process

In the UK, disabled people do not have to pay VAT when buying certain disability aids and services (This can be claimed by friend or family member purchasing on their behalf). Not everything supplied to disabled people is necessarily zero-rated for VAT. Goods and services on which you do not have to pay VAT are usually known as 'zero-rated' or 'eligible for VAT relief.

Who is eligible for VAT relief?

You must be 'chronically sick or disabled' to qualify for VAT relief. The HMRC comment on this is as follows. A person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they either:

VAT Relief on our Disability Aids

All products on the Aids for Mobility website are flagged with an option to claim VAT relief during Checkout if it applies to that item. When you add a zero-rated product or service to your Basket, you will be asked to tick a checkbox to confirm that you, or the person for whom you are buying the item, are eligible for VAT Relief.

How VAT relief works

If you are claiming VAT Relief you will be asked to complete an extra few questions during Checkout, where we will ask you to provide brief details of your disability and confirmation that the product is for 'personal or domestic use'. We will keep a record of this declaration along with your order details. You can then buy the product(s) in your Basket at a price that excludes VAT. You will be asked to make this declaration each time you place an order that includes zero-rated products. It is a legal requirement that we record this information for every order, and we apologise for the inconvenience.

More information from HMRC

You can find out more about VAT Relief for disabled people on the HM Revenue and Customs website. If you cannot find the answer to your questions there or would prefer to speak to an adviser, you can call their Helpline on 0845 302 02 03.

The helpline is open from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. (Closed weekends and bank holidays).