Falls are the leading cause of injury in seniors. Upon waking up, a person is often disoriented or cannot see clearly due to the darkened room. Many seniors who suffer from chronic illnesses and balance issues may be confused when they wake up in the middle of the night and think they can safely get out of bed. Caregivers often strive to keep a senior in bed during the night because of the potential risk of falling, but the aging individual may still try to get up. While sometimes necessary, this can be dangerous. A bed alarm helps keep a senior safe during the night.
Even with the best of care, it is difficult to monitor someone 24/7. During the night hours, many seniors are at a significantly increased risk of falling. As a person ages, they become frailer, which makes them more prone to falling, especially when rising from a bed. Seniors who suffer from dementia may also become disoriented in the middle of the night and try to get up. Such circumstances can be dangerous. The elderly person could fall or wander off into a dangerous area of the home such as bathroom or stairwell where they could trip or stumble.
Having a bed alarm automatically notifies a caregiver or family member if the senior tries to rise from the bed, so that an accident can be circumvented. The caregiver can immediately come to the aid of the senior when they hear the alarm.
No matter what a person’s age, the nighttime hours can be disorientating. If a senior who is on medication, suffers from mobility issues, chronic illness, or dementia should wake up in the dark, they may automatically get up in a state of agitation. In some cases, medications may even cause sleepwalking. Most caregivers do not want to place uncomfortable restraints on a senior to keep them in bed, so instead, they turn to a bed alarm system. A caregiver often has a difficult time monitoring if a senior gets up in the wee hours of the night when falls are likely. However, a bed sensor can quickly alert the caregiver if the elderly person tries to rise from bed.
A bed alarm detects motion in the bed, or it senses when the weight is reduced and shifted on the mattress. The system relies on either a motion sensor or a bed pad alarm to detect if the person gets out of bed or starts moving excessively, which could indicate that the individual requires assistance. A bed alarm quickly alerts during a dangerous situation by setting off an alarm. Upon hearing the alarm, the caregiver can immediately enter the bedroom to aid the senior.
There are two common types of bed alarms:
It is impossible to monitor someone 24/7. The night hours pose a significant fall danger for elderly individuals, so using a bed alarm system is beneficial. With the alarm, a caregiver can rest easy knowing that if the senior should try to get up in the middle the night, the alarm will sound and they can immediately respond. Most elderly individuals do not want to be restrained in bed, so the use of a bed alarm is emotionally and mentally reassuring. It is a valuable safety tool that should be utilized to prevent an unnecessary fall. Ideally, a bed alarm should be used in conjunction with other fall prevention strategies.