Preventing Falls Through Facilitating Orientation

Posted on — By Marisela Thompson

Step. Turn. Step. How many times have you walked into a room in your home only to change your orientation and go back the way you came? Have you ever started walking, but lost in thought, ended up in a part of your home you had not planned on? Now what if I told you, Team Vegas’s design took even that little detail and designed a home to help?

When designing a home for active aging, the team took care to consider even the smallest details. Principles of Aging in Place guide the building’s form as well as the interiors’ design.  A key principle  includes facilitating orientation.  Addressing this principle within the home’s design provides an opportunity to reduce the frustration of an individual walking without a clear direction to follow.

Therefore, Team Vegas’s home allows for 360 degrees of circulation.  As shown in the  image below, an individual residing in the home can always move forward without a need of going back the way they came. .

 

 

 

This may seem like an unimportant detail, but reducing the amount of turns an individual would need to make, reduces the falls that an individual is likely to experience in their home. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls are the leading cause of injuries and death. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also states that falls occur most often in the home environment and for older adults, one in three elder individuals are likely to fall each year.

Along with facilitating orientation, all homeowners should take care to avoid common hazards in their home. Unsecured rugs can lift, fold and bubble.  This can result in a rug catching our foot and/or testing our balance. Power cords used for common devices around the home should be secured away from walking paths.  Lastly, adequate lighting should always be present in each space. For more quick tips, check Baloise Group’s video below for tips on preventing falls in the home.  

 

Overall, facilitating orientation is not limited to presenting the user with their next space and direction to follow.  It becomes a tool to promote easier movement within a given environment and a way to reduce the unintentional falls we all may experience in our daily lives.