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Safety Tips & Fall Prevention Tips

Falls are common to people with Parkinson’s disease. Use some of these safety tips to help prevent or avoid falls and other injuries.

Standing from a sitting position:

  • Use the “nose over toes” approach when getting up from a sitting position;
    1. Move to the front edge of the seat
    2. Lean forward placing your nose over your toes
    3. Making a fist, push against the chair seat to slowly move up into a standing position
    4. Wait a few seconds before starting to walk
  • Avoid reaching for a walker or cane as the major assistance to help you stand. Walkers may scoot away causing falls.

When walking:

  • Keep one hand free when walking in order to grab railings to balance when needed
  • Swing both arms when walking to increase balance and stability
  • To improve stability, distribute your weight evenly when walking or standing by keeping legs slightly apart
  • Wear proper footwear. Low heeled shoes are best
  • Use walking aids such as walking poles or walkers if necessary

Other movement tips:

  • Cues such as visual lines (laser lights) may help to overcome freezing when walking.
  • Turn slowly, taking a slightly curved path.
  • Walking aids should be placed nearby and within easy reach of the patient.

Eliminate Tripping Hazards in the Home

  • Floors should be smooth non-slip surfaces.
  • Keep walking areas free of small objects, extension cords, and other wires.
  • Remove small throw rugs, one of the major tripping hazards in homes.
  • Install ample lighting including night lights in bathrooms and hallways.
  • Light switches should be within easy reach from the bed.
  • Install handrails on both sides of stairways and in the bathroom. Towel bars ARE NOT a substitute for strong, secure handrails.
  • Space furniture to allow for enough room to be able to move around easily.

General Safety tips:

  • Program mobile phones and land lines with emergency phone numbers and other numbers you can call for help
  • Post numbers near the phone.
  • Use non-skid bath mats and a bath chair or stool in the shower.

Safety Resources

Checklist: Home Safety: How Well Does Your Home Meet Your Needs?

For a free in-home assessment call 303-861-1810.