Authored by Revere Health

Tips to Prevent Falling Injuries in the Winter

January 17, 2019 | Orthopedics

Ice, snow, puddles. Extension cords running across front walkways and fallen branches due to high winds and heavy snows. These are all very real concerns in areas that are susceptible to extreme weather conditions in the winter. Regardless of your age or current health status, you may become the victim of a slip and fall accident if you’re not careful.


Types of Slip and Fall Injuries

If you’re like most people, you associate falls with embarrassment. However, slips and falls can also result in severe injuries, including:

  • Fractures and breaks
  • Head and brain injuries
  • Neck injuries
  • Back and spinal cord injuries
  • Knee or shoulder dislocation
  • Permanent scarring
  • Wrongful death


What You Can Do To Prevent Fall Injuries

Although property owners have a legal obligation to keep premises in relatively safe conditions for visitors, it’s important to take a certain level of responsibility for your own safety. This is especially true during the colder months when Mother Nature creates hazards of its own. Some steps you can take to keep yourself safe when the weather turns frightful include:

  • Wear appropriate footwear. If it’s slippery or wet outside, wear boots with traction and avoid heels. Walk slowly and carefully and keep your feet as flat as possible.
  • Keep an eye out for puddles of water. Entrances to stores, homes and other buildings are likely to have pools of water as a result of all the foot traffic.
  • Be wary of black ice. Just as when you’re driving, black ice can appear out of nowhere, and it can be devastating.
  • Rely on support when it’s there. Whether getting out of your vehicle or walking up a set of stairs, use surrounding structures (such as your car door or a handrail) to support yourself.
  • Avoid carrying items as you walk if you can, and keep your hands outside of your pockets. If your hands are full when you fall, it can hinder your ability to catch yourself.
  • If you suspect that an area is slippery, tap your foot on it before walking across.
  • Avoid uneven surfaces whenever possible. This includes steps and curbs, as they are likely to have ice on them even after a property owner has salted the surface.


If you do fall and sustain an injury, reach out to your healthcare provider right away. Your healthcare provider can perform a thorough examination and determine the extent of your injuries. He or she can also prescribe a course of treatment designed to help you heal as quickly as possible.  


Dr. Larsen chose to become an orthopedic surgeon after growing up watching his father work in the same profession. He observed the love his father had for taking care of people and improving lives by fixing problems with their knees and shoulders. Dr. Larsen enjoys communicating with his patients and working together to find a solution, either through surgery or lifestyle changes.



“10 Tips to Avoid Winter Slips, Trips and Falls.” UPMC Health Beat.

“The Most Common Slip and Fall Injuries.”

The Live Better Team


The Live Better Team

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This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.