Make your kitchen a falls-free zone

The kitchen is the heart of the home. Hanging out, relaxing and cooking for yourself or loved ones is something that people of all ages like to do, especially older adults who have a background or passion for cooking. However, as we get older, a kitchen that used to meet our needs may need some adjustments to ensure we can safely continue cooking and enjoying meals.

A few simple changes can help make your kitchen a safe place:

  • Rearrange: Make sure the ingredients, equipment and dishes that you use most often are in easily accessible locations. Store frequently used items at waist level to minimize bending and reaching.
  • Make it easy: Make sure all cabinets and drawers are easy to open and close.
  • Step up safely: Invest in a sturdy step stool with a hand rail to access out-of-reach items. Never climb on a chair, table or stool not designed for climbing.
  • Take a seat: Have a stool or chair in the kitchen for resting while you cook to prevent fatigue or loss of balance.
  • Add a mat: Add non-slip mats with beveled edges to areas that might become wet, such as in front of the sink and the dishwasher.
  • Use smaller containers: Divide products from large containers into smaller and lighter containers that are easier to handle than heavy bags, boxes or jars.
  • Keep it tidy: Wipe up spills immediately. A wet floor is a slippery floor, and dry goods like sugar and flour can be as slippery as ice.

Visit www.steadyu.ohio.gov to find more tips and resources.

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