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I know, I should be writing about uplifting, joyful holiday activities and wishes, but I am using this holiday post to send my last wish for 2018.

I wish that you stay safe, healthy and free from falls.

Falling for many older adults is the first (mis)step to serious life changes. The most dire, of course, is death, but for many it results in hospitalization, rehabilitation and modified mobility - and ultimately the loss of independence.

Winter and the holidays bring early darkness, wet and slippery walkways and steps, chilly days and lots of festivities. In the hectic days ahead, I ask that you consider these few tips:

1. make sure your home and surroundings are well lit - before it gets dark; 2. take an extra minute or two before racing off - slow it down a notch;
3. be aware of wet leaves, tile steps and walkways;
4. dress warmly - wear your scarves, gloves and hats;
5. monitor the holiday cheer - watch your alcohol intake;
6. don't be shy to ask for or take a hand/arm if you're offered; 7. if you need a cane, walker or other device - use it!

Additional information on fall prevention on the website

I wish you all a happy holiday and look forward to 2019!

Lisa Brinkmann, Executive Director, Marin Villages

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Marin Villages is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization • 415-457-4633 • email • 4340 Redwood Highway, Suite F-142 San Rafael, CA 94903