Dealing With a Fear of Falling

Learn how to manage your anxiety around falling

Our content is reviewed regularly by care professionals.
This page was last updated on 9 August 2022

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For Families and Individuals Seeking Home Care Services

    As we age we are more at risk of falling, this means we also become more anxious about falling. It is normal to worry about falling but some people struggle with the worry becoming overbearing to the point it affects their daily life. It is important to learn how to control anxious feelings so they don’t start to affect your confidence and mental wellbeing.

    Address What Could Put You at Risk of Falling

    By knowing what could increase your risk of falling, you can prevent over worrying about everything. Knowing how to move around safely is an important part of fall prevention.

    Move Around Safely By:
    • Wearing sturdy well-fitting shoes with a good grip
    • Walking at a steady pace, don’t rush
    • Only walk in well-lit areas
    • Use a walking aid if recommended
    • Wear glasses if needed

    When you know what you should focus on to reduce your risk of falls you can act on it. Knowing you have decreased your risk will lower your anxiety.


    Medications can affect your balance and stability. Side effects such as dizziness, lack of alertness and drowsiness will put you more at risk of falling.

    When being prescribed medication ask your GP all the side effects it may cause, what you should and should not take it with, what time you should take it and how often. By knowing all this you can plan your day around your medication and its side effects.

    For example, don’t plan to go shopping straight after you take a medication that can cause lightheadedness, plan to go shopping before you take the medication and arrange to relax in front of the TV when your medications side effects are likely to be at their strongest.

    Find out more about managing your medication for fall prevention here.

    Health Condition

    Health conditions that affect your bones, strength and mobility can put you more at risk of falling or becoming injured during a fall.

    Your GP should recommend you walking aids if your mobility is affected by your condition. Mobility aids are great to keep you moving around safely.

    Home Safety

    Keeping your home a safe and hazard-free environment is necessary for your physical health and a vital part of fall prevention.

    Ways to prevent falls at home include:

    • Using non-slip mats and rugs
    • Keeping your house tidy and organised
    • Having your house well-lit whilst walking around
    • Not having any wires running across the floor

    Find out more about how to keep your whole home safe here.

    Create a Falls Plan

    Creating a falls plan means if a fall does happen you know how to react appropriately to receive help as quickly as possible. A fall plan reduces your chance of serious injury from a fall and relieves the anxiety around falling.

    With a secure fall plan in place, you can feel safer and there is no fear of the unknown.

    Regularly Exercise

    Regular physical activity encourages you to be on your feet and moving often. This not only improves your bone and muscle strength to make you more stable on your feet but also grows your confidence around walking.

    Exercise is known to release endorphins in your brain. Endorphins trigger happy and positive feelings and reduce negative and anxious feelings.

    Learn How to Subside Your Anxious Thoughts

    Because anxiety is a natural human reaction to situations of danger and stress it is impossible to stop us from feeling anxious at all, but what you can control is how to deal with the anxiety you are feeling and how to reduce it.

    Ways to Reduce Anxiety Include:
    • Relaxation techniques
    • Avoid drinking caffeine and alcohol when anxious, they can make anxiety worse and prevent you from relaxing
    • Get some sleep
    • Focus on your breathing
    • Eat some food – skipping a meal or not eating enough can cause you to become anxious and irritated.
    • Write your thoughts down
    • Do an activity you enjoy that will take your mind off negative thoughts
    • Talk to someone about how you are feeling or a topic that will take your mind off anxious thoughts.
    • Find something that will make you laugh

    Get External Support

    A carer can help you with daily activities and chores that you struggle with or make you anxious such as shopping and housekeeping. A carer can come to your home, assist you, prove companionship and also support you emotionally.

    Here at Esteem, we offer a 24/7 response service with our home care packages. You will be given a personal alarm and if you ever find yourself needing immediate assistance a carer will arrive promptly at your home. Knowing you always have our care in place can relieve you of the worry and stress around falling.

    If you are struggling with thoughts of anxiety taking control of your daily life you should talk to someone about it. Consider reaching out to a friend or family member, for professional support talk to your GP or a therapist.

    Asking for support is nothing to be ashamed of, it can help you overcome your worries and improve your quality of life.