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As the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for adults aged 65 and over, falls present a major health care concern, particularly for older individuals. Many falls that occur in the home could have been prevented if steps had been taken to improve safety. One simple way that you can protect yourself or your loved one from a fall is to use bed rails in the bedroom, and Walgreens has many styles from which you can choose.
While an accidental fall can occur at any time, the risk of falling increases when people with limited mobility change positions. Stiffness and pain can make it difficult to move from standing to sitting or from standing to lying down. In addition, some people find it hard to maintain their balance when they change positions, and this combined with limited mobility greatly increases the risk of falling when getting into or out of bed. Individuals may also be at risk for rolling or falling out of bed, particularly if they suffer from dementia, Alzheimer's disease or another condition that leads to confusion or disorientation. Bed rails can help to keep people from falling out of bed and provide a stable object to which they can cling as they change positions.
There are two main types of bed rails that are available on the market, and each type is ideal for addressing different concerns. The first type consists of a rail mounted to a frame that fits underneath the mattress. When properly positioned, the rail sits right beside the bed, so that a person with limited mobility can grab hold of it when getting into and out of the bed. These rails can also reduce the chances of a person falling out of bed. The second type of bed rail is a vertical bar that is placed beside the bed. This type of grab bar is used only for transferring in and out of the bed and does not prevent falls. However, the bars keep the bed area clear, making it easier for caregivers to assist patients in bed, and providing a more open feeling for whoever is lying in the bed.
After deciding which types of bed rails are right for you or your loved one, you'll need to compare the various bed rail models available to determine which are the best fit for the bedroom. One thing to consider is the weight limit on the rails. Each type can safely support a maximum number of pounds of weight, and there are heavy-duty bariatric rails available for larger people. Some bed rails have built-in storage pockets that can be used for keeping medical supplies, reading materials and personal care items within easy reach, and these can be beneficial for people who are bed-ridden. Some bed rails also include a stool to assist with transferring to the bed. Bars may also differ in the size of bed with which they will safely work, so be sure to read the product descriptions carefully before making your purchase.
This summary is intended for general informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. You should read product labels. In addition, if you are taking medications, herbs, or other supplements you should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before taking any over-the-counter medication as they may interact with other medications, herbs, and nutritional products. If you have a medical condition, including if you are pregnant or nursing, you should speak to your physician before taking these products. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.