slips trips and falls

Slips, Trips and Falls:

–          Commonest injuries in the home. 60% of fatal falls happen at home. 20% of those who fear falling limit their daily activity (1 in 3 elderly people will fall each year).

–          Use handrails

–          Avoid fast movement, especially round corners and stairs

–          Don’t kick obstacles out the way, pick them up and move them

–          Wash floors properly and don’t leave pools of water

–          Wear proper shoes

–          Look out for sharp objects

–          Don’t leave cords trailing

–          Watch where you’re going

–          Ice and snow can pose a risk so take extra care. Also with uneven steps or flooring.

–          Don’t block your view with bulky objects when carrying

–          Unsecure rugs and carpets?

–          Carry sharp objects pointing down (and don’t run with them)

–          Clear up spillages

–          Make sure there is adequate lighting

–          Never climb on furniture

Hot n Cold

Staying safe in hot weather and cold:


–          Symptoms of sunstroke/heat stroke include rashes, fatigue, dizziness, headache, fever, nausea, difficulty breathing, muscle spasms, sweating, cold pale flushed skin, rapid or weak pulse

–          Lie down in a shaded breezy area and loosen clothing

–          Drink small amounts of water every 15-20 mins

–          Schedule outings in cooler hours, or short breaks

–          Wear loose light clothing

–          Avoid salty foods


–          Remove stings by scraping gently sideways with edge of a credit card as this will avoid spreading venom

–          Reduce swelling and itching with an ice pack and damp cloth

–          Pennies help


–          Elderly have less body fat to protect them from cold, illnesses, meds and age can make them more susceptible

–          Wear loose thin layers,

–          Keep dry and drink caffeine free drinks

–          Use blankets and warm water to warm up (those microwave beanie things are a god send)

Moving and Handling

Moving and Handling:

–          Avoid as much as practical

–          4 in 5 adults have back pain at some time in their lives

–          A strain=stretch or tear in muscle-caused by lifting too heavy, working too hard, repetitive motionS

–          A sprain=tear of ligaments at joint. Cause by trips.falls

–          10lbs extra weight on abs=100lbs extra pressure on spine


–          Aload=animate or inanimate oject to be handled _> handling= moving, lowering, pushing or pulling

–          Carry out a risk assessment, task-special training? Harmful to preganant? Joints?
Individual need-Age? Pain? Cognitively aware? Communication barrier?
Load-Bulk, size, shape, fragility-how long? How often? How heavy?
Environment-space? Steps? Lighting? Obstacles? Equipment?

–          Back pain can be caused by twisting, bending, stooped posture or poor standing posture

–          Before moving ask yourself: is it necessary? Where is it going? Will I need to change position? Remove obstructions. Stable base- Soften knees and hips, feet flat on floor. Hold object close to body with palms and tighten stomach. Head up, chin in. Bend knees. Don’t squat/stoop. Turn with feet not back or hips. Push don’t pull heavies.

–          Try not to manually lift a caree as should encourage them to be as independent as possible.

–          If a caree is falling try to guide them to the ground protecting their head. Don’t try to catch them or pick them up. Cover them with a blanket, call 999, reassure them and make them comfy

–          Showers are generally safer than baths.



–          Never perform drag lift-can dislocate shoulders and give pressure sores. Pivot lift-can put pressure on back. Shoulder lift-can damage shoulder joints

–          From the shower: dry arms and upper body, wear a robe, get them to grip arm close to elbow, grab rails not towel rails.

–          From chair: brakes on, stand in front feet apart, knees bent a bit. Carees feet flat on floor, slide to edge of chair, one hand on chair, one close to your elbow, to reducae pressure. One knee bent between their legs.

–          Always ask permission and talk them through

–          Follow up the stairs and lead them down

–          From bed: Move legs to side of bed, sit up, swing legs over side of bed, follow chair advice.

Hazardous Substances

Hazardous Substances:

–          Coshh

–          Keep products in original containers

–          Always follow instructions on the packet, ventilation/gloves etc

–          Hold at arms length when spraying

–          Avoid use near flames

–          Keep away from food, children and vulnerable adults

–          Keep at room temperature and out of direct sunlight

–          If mixed can cause toxic fumes esp bleach and ammonia. Only thing safe to mix with is water

–          Don’t use if unlabelled

–          Return un needed meds to pharmacy, do not flush them down the toilet or sink

–          Use gloves

–          If have a headache, dizziness or nausea get to fresh air

–          If get a rash, burning itching or stinging wash the area throughly

Food Hygiene

Food hygiene:

–          Every year 5.5 million people will get food poisoning, 200 of those will die.

–          Germs travel quicker through the air e.g. coughing sneezing

–          Food poisoning symptoms include fever, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea

–          The kitchen is one of the most dangerous rooms in the house, burns, cuts, shocks and food poisoning

–          Wash hands for 15-20 seconds before: starting food prep, eating or handling meds. Between: handling raw foods. After: handling raw foods, going to the toilet, coughing, sneezing, toughing hair/face, touching rubbish, smoking, gardening and handling pets

–          Bacteria on hands doubles after toileting

–          Bacteria live for 3h

–          1000x more bacteria in the damp

–          Bacteria thrive under long fingernails

–          Right handed people tend to wash their left hand more thoroughly and vice versa

–          Millions of bacteria live under rings watches and bracelets. Can also be found on clothes, skin, bags, gardens, air, food (everywhere)

–          A 1mm hair follicle can harbour 50000 bacteria

–          Put lids on hot liquids before moving

–          Use over gloves and replace them regularly

–          Don’t touch food

–          Don’t carry more plates than you can carry

–          Cut and pour away from you

–          Use sharp knives as dull ones can slip, keep hadles free from grease

–          Wash knives separately and put away immediately. Don’t put them in soapy water

–          Keep hair clean and tied back, don’t brush hair in a kitchen/dining area

–          If you have any of the following avoid cooking/take extra precautions: sore throat, infection, wound, sickness, diarrhoea, sneezing, coughing

–          When shopping buy a smaller amount of perishables so they don’t waste. Follow storage and cooking instructions, bruisables on top, freeze/fridge straight away, avoid putting in warm places, cool boxes, keep raw foods, fruit, cooked, chilled etc separate

–          Food contamination=food poisoning

–          Is food in the right place? Fridge/freezer. At the right temp? 4degrees/-12degrees. For the right time?

–          Freezer stars: *=1 week, **=2 weeks, ***=3 months

–          Don’t leave meat/dairy out to warm

–          Don’t put open cans in the fridge

–          Don’t re-use foil or film

–          Don’t overload fridge/freezer as cold air cant circulate

–          Regularly check dates

–          Use by-never use after. Best before-Can use but taste alters

–          Date and description on leftovers

–          Don’t handle raw/cooked foods or mix utensils

–          Wash fruit and veg thoroughly

–          Dispose any food that may have come into contact with pests

–          If not prepped/stored correctly these foods have the highest risk: cooked meat, cooked poultry, egg products, dairy, seafood, cream cakes, cooked rice and raw meat.

–          Ecoli symptoms include: stomach cramps, ab pain, diarrhoea. As the toxins increase stools become more watery and then bloody. Elderly are more at risk

Fire & Gas


  • Safety is a win/win situation
  • 400000 domestic fires a year-85% of all fire deaths occur at home. ½ of those who die are 60+
  • Heat sources: cigarettes, lighters, portable heaters, radiators, electrical appliances, plugs, sunlight and glass
  • Fuel: solids: paper, fabrics
    Liquids: paint, perfume
    Gas: propane, butane
  • Fuel+oxygen+heat=fire
  • If it is a small fire use a fire extinguisher:
    red-water-carbon based materials
    cream=foam-liquids and carbon based materials
    blue-powder-electrical equipment, liquids and carbon based materials
    black-CO2-electircal equipment, liquids and gas (if no chance of explosion)
    yellow-wet chemical-cooking fat, oils and carbon
  • If it is a big fire evacuate
  • As you evacuate limit the free flow of ait to the fire, keep doors and windows shut. Stoop low (below smoke) and feel doors with the back of hand
  • Electrical faults and a major cause of fires, do regular checks for damaged, frayed cords and don’t use
  • Service electrical blankets yearly. Make sure they are switched off and unplugged when not it use and never use alongside a hot water bottle.
  • Make sure there is a free flow of air around the TV and no vase on top
  • Candles not on furniture
  • Portable heaters away from furniture and clothes
  • Unplug anything not in use, do not pull cord
  • Overloaded sockets generate more electrical current and therefore more heat
  • When a bulb blows allow ten minutes to cool down and then change it asap
  • Clues to faulty wiring include flickering lights, frequent power cuts, and frequent bulbs blowing
  • Never re enter a burning building
  • Stop, drop and roll, or use a blanket to smother
  • Check smoke alarms monthly
  • Use a deep ashtray with broad base, not on furniture and douse with water before binning
  • No matches, lighters or paper near heat
  • Don’t leave a chip pan unattended and never throw water on it, it will turn to steam, expand and explode. Turn it off and smother with a wet blanket
  • Make sure you have two exit routes
  • Make sure you know where the mains are for water, gas and electricity
  • Keep escape routes clear from clutter and keep keys easily accessible
  • Empty rubbish bins
  • To use a fire extinguisher, pull out the pin without holding the trigger aim at the base of the fire and squeeze trigger. Use a sweeping motion and be sure to keep low


  • If there is a gas leak, turn the gas off at the mains, evacuate and don’t use electrics
  • Natural gas, running cars and burning wood all produce carbon monoxide as well as water heaters, furnaces and ovens
  • Carbon monoxide is colourless and practically odourless
  • If appliances are not working properly carbon monoxide can build up in the air being exposed to this reduces oxygen in the blood. You may feel sleepy, headache, dizzy or short of breath. Ventilate the home by opening doors and windows. Turn everything off and leave.
  • Make sure heating systems are professionally inspected each year
  • Make sure the chimney is well vented
  • Do not heat the home with a clothes dryer or gas oven
  • Use exhaust fans when cooking
  • Do not leave cars running in the garage