As we age, our bones become more brittle. Our bodies also become less efficient at recovering from injury and more susceptible to infection. So a fall that you would brush off in your 30s could result in multiple visits to a hospital in your 70s or 80s.
Nursing homes must therefore do what they can to prevent the residents under their care from falling. Here are some of their options to guard against residents falling out of bed:
Install guard rails around the bed
This is one of the best ways to prevent someone from falling, yet it is not very dignified. It could make those sleeping in the beds feel as if they are a child once again, in that they are incapable of looking after themself and need to be caged in like a baby in their cot.
Use soft cushions to bulk up the side of the beds
This is essentially a less effective but far more dignified version of the guard rails. Carefully selected scatter cushions can add a bit of glamor and comfort to the bed, making it more like the beds you see in interior design magazines rather than hospital wards. At the same time, they make falling out less likely.
Use a low bed
If you are going to fall out, it’s better not to fall too far. Something more futon-like can minimize the height anyone tumbling out of bed will fall. Combine it with thick rugs around the bed to soften the landing.
A good nursing home should examine all options to keep its residents safe. Determining if a nursing home did enough will be crucial if your relative is injured while resident there.