A daily walk is an excellent way to stay healthy. For seniors, walking is one of the best forms of exercise. It's not hard on the joints. It gets them outside for fresh air. And, it's a good way to socialize with neighbors.
When your dad is out for his daily walk, he does need to stay safe. Here are four mistakes seniors often make that can put them in harm's way.
Check the Weather
Before heading out, your dad should check the weather. If it's sunny, he needs to grab a hat and put sunscreen on at least 10 minutes prior. If it's cool, he'll need a jacket and possibly gloves and a scarf. There could be distant storms. If a storm hits all of the sudden, he doesn't want to be a mile from his house or a business where he can take shelter.
Look as Well as Listen for Cars
Numerous cases of elderly men and women getting hit by cars are reported each year. To stay safe, your dad should look and listen for traffic when he walks. When he's using a crosswalk, he needs to look for traffic. Some seniors get hit by cars that fail to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk. If he's not making eye contact with a stopped driver, he needs to wait until cars go through.
When walking on the side of the road, your dad needs to face traffic. If he sees a car coming toward him, he should move as far over as he safely can. Make sure he knows to keep an eye on the car to make sure the driver is alert and not looking down. If the driver isn't paying attention, your dad needs to step farther off the road.
If something does happen, you want paramedics and emergency services to be able to identify your dad. Make sure he carries ID when he goes for a walk. If he has a medical condition, a medic alert bracelet or necklace is important. Keep it updated with changes to phone numbers and health issues.
Bring a Cell Phone or Tell Someone
When your dad leaves, he needs to tell someone he's going for a walk and where he plans to go. If he lives alone and has no one he can tell, he should bring a cell phone with GPS tracking turned on. If something happens, you need to be able to track him.
Elderly care agencies offer services that keep your dad safe. Caregivers can join him on walks. They can help him with all activities of daily living and report to you if something seems off. Learn more about the ways elderly care professionals worth with you and your dad to make sure he is able to live independently at home. Call now.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in DeWitt, MI, please contact the caring staff at Seniors Helping Seniors of Lansing. Call today: 517-332-9953.