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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Slippery When Wet: Be Careful Out There!

Yesterday when I read in the Daily Times about the 91 year old lady in Nether Providence that was found outside in the snow, it reminded of how often everyday activities that we do can be so dangerous. As we age, they become even more dangerous. Add a physical limitation such as arthritis, a repaired hip or vision impairment and the chances of you falling in the snow or on the ice increases dramatically.

For example, today was supposed to be a thick layer of ice on the ground, enough to cause us to put on our ice skates if we wanted to go anywhere including to end of the driveway to get the mail. If you look out the window, there does not appear to be any ice, it looks like all rain. Well at least it looked like that to me until I walked out into the driveway and found it was ice, black ice. Now black ice is tough because you truly cannot see it but I find the ice on cement sidewalk is just as bad. Ice is Ice and snow is snow. For some reason we always want to prove the ice and snow wrong. We want to get out there and walk on it, to shovel it and to show it exactly what we think of it.

For some reason and especially as we age we think we have an understanding with it. I walked on snow and ice all my life why is this one any different? Well if you have a vision impairment now it is different. If you have a repaired hip or a shoulder injury it is much different. I am not sure why we want to prove the snow and ice wrong but we do it. I have seen so many elderly people in their 80's and even 90's out shoveling. Some are walking, in snow or on ice or both. I think to myself why? Where do you have to go or what do you have to do that is so important to be out in this? But then I realize I am out in it. It seems to be human nature to think we can handle it regardless of our age.

I cannot stop anyone from going out in the weather. I can beg and plead but regardless of your age you are going to do what you want. I cannot convince you to wear your help me I fallen button in the house so what makes me think I can get you to wear it outside? It is waterproof and if you fall outside and you push it, depending on how far from the house you are it will probably work. Most of them work as far as the driveway. At least someone would know you need help. If your family is home they will hear the machine going off and come to your aid, if you live alone, an ambulance will be dispatched. At least someone could come and help you.

Think about it. what precautions have you put into place if you fall outside? Regardless of your age, you are probably going to need help. The best thing to do is stay in. Now I know you probably won't do that so I ask the next best thing of you, put a precaution in place case something happens when you are out there.

On a side note, my deepest condolences to the Nether Providence family for the loss of their mother. A tragic accident that could happen to any of us.

1 comment:

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