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Fall Prevention Step 1: Check Your Medications and Assess Your Risk

Many people over age 65 take multiple prescriptions, over-the-counter pills, vitamins, and supplements. Even though these medications help reduce symptoms of other medical issues, they sometimes have side effects that put people at risk for falls. Here are some factors that put people at greater risk:

  • Taking 2 or more medications, vitamins, or supplements

  • Taking medications that improve relaxation, sleep, and mood

  • Taking medications that cause a drop in blood pressure

  • Drinking alcohol while taking medication

Our Falls Risk Calculator helps assess the risk of falling due to medications and other factors, including previous falls, being afraid of falling, experiencing balance and mobility difficulties, feeling dizzy, and vision problems. Answer the questions and inform your health care provider of the results. They can help you find ways to minimize your risk!

What You Can Do – Seniors

  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist about every prescription, over-the-counter pill, vitamin, and supplement you are taking. Use the Medication Record Book to keep track of everything!
  • Have your medications checked once a year by your doctor or pharmacist. The Ontario MedsCheck program allows you to schedule a 20-30 minute appointment with a pharmacist to review your medications. Your pharmacist can give you the information or you can call 1-866-255-6701 (TTY: 1-800-387-5599).
  • Return expired or outdated medications to your pharmacist.
  • Inform your pharmacist or doctor if your medications make you dizzy or drowsy.

 

What You Can Do – Families and Friends

  • Ask your loved ones what medications they are taking – including prescriptions, over-the-counter pills, vitamins, and supplements. Review the Medication Record Book with them and keep a copy on file.
  • Encourage your loved ones to talk to their pharmacist or doctor if you notice they are dizzy or drowsy after starting new medications.
  • Do not share your prescription medications with your loved ones.

What You Can Do – Professionals

  • Ask your clients what prescriptions, over-the-counter pills, vitamins, and supplements they are using each time you see them. Review their Medication Record Book regularly.
  • Review their medications each year to reduce drug interactions and negative side effects. Our Drug Side Effects and Minimization Chart gives information about how some types of drugs increase the likelihood of falls.
  • Educate your clients about the effects of drinking alcohol while taking medications.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Accessibility Statement

We have attempted to make the pages on this Web site accessible for all visitors.  If you have any difficulty viewing any page with adaptive technology, please contact Amber Schieck :

Email: a.schieck@publichealthgreybruce.on.ca

Phone: 1-800-263-3456 ext. 1270

Medical Disclaimer

The information contained on this website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition, or before beginning any exercise program.

CONTACTS

For more information about how to prevent falls please contact:

Community Care Access Centre

310-CCAC (2222)

www.healthcareathome.ca

 

To learn about falls prevention programs in your community please contact:

The Healthline

www.thehealthline.ca

211 Ontario

Dial 2-1-1

www.211ontario.ca

 

Telehealth: 1-866-797-0000

For emergencies always dial 9-1-1

Copyright © 2013 All Rights Reserved.