Fall Prevention

According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), more than one in four people over the age of 65 experience a fall annually. People living with dementia are at an even higher risk of falling because of changes that occur as the disease progresses.

For people living with dementia, an increased risk of falls may be related to changes with:

  • Decreased balance and reaction time
  • Perception or visual problems
  • Difficulty walking
  • Memory impairment
  • Decrease in judgment abilities
  • Less insight into environment and situations

When modifying your home environment, aim to keep things familiar, striking a balance between safety and independence.

Winter weather also comes with certain safety concerns to be aware of. Perception problems caused by dementia may make it difficult to see ice on the sidewalk or can cause someone to believe snow is a solid surface.

Below are a few actions you can take to help reduce the risk of falls inside and outside the home.


  • Make sure each room has enough light and reduce dark areas and shadows
  • Use contrasting coloured tape to highlight steps
  • Place night lights throughout the home for when you need to go to the bathroom or kitchen during the night
  • Use non-slippery bathmats and place non-slip strips in the bath/shower
  • Install railings inside and outside the house and grab bars in the bathroom for extra support


  • Keep your walkways free of ice and snow
  • Take smaller steps and slow down
  • Make sure you and others wear non-skid boots
  • Dress in bright colours and add reflective material to clothing

Taking a few extra measures around the home and before journeying outside can help reduce the risk of falls for all, especially those living with dementia. If you have questions about home or outdoor safety, contact our First Link® Client Support team by calling 204-943-6622 (Winnipeg) or 1-800-378-6622 (Provincial).