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Winter Safely: How to Prevent Falls

When the chill of winter settles in, even a short walk from your front door to your driveway can become a dangerous journey.

Feet in the snow, step into winter

When surfaces are snowy, icy and slippery, you're more likely to fall and injure your head or break a bone. Falls can be serious for anyone, but it's especially so for older adults who are less likely to recover from a fractured hip or other injury.

For safer walking, no matter what your age, consider these tips:

Gear up

Choose cold-weather boots with grooved soles made from rubber or other nonslip materials.

Related: 12 Tips to Help You Travel Safely This Season

If you encounter ice, try to go around it

Look for a nearby snowy or grassy patch that you can step on for better traction.

Beware of black ice

It may just look like a wet or glazed spot on a sidewalk.

Slow down

Take shorter steps and walk with your knees slightly bent. Leave for your destination early so you won't be tempted to walk quickly to your car or the bus.

Related: Say No to Inversion: Tips on How You Can Improve Air Quality Right Now

Use deicer on walkways

And remove snow before it piles up. Snow removal can be strenuous work. If you have a medical condition, check with your doctor before you shovel, or better yet, have someone else shovel it for you.

And while you’re here, view our other articles on winter health.

References:

American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; U.S. Department of Labor

 

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The content presented here is for your information only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, and it should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns.

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