Fall detectors

Fall detectors

About a third of people over 65 will fall each year, the figure for those over 75 is even higher. Older individuals are often unable to get up off the floor without help and thus may end up lying on the floor till help arrives. This can result in secondary problems such as hypothermia and pressure sores. Telecare products and services can help prevent a fall occurring and ensure that assistance is promptly and automatically provided if you do fall:


Telecare sensors can be used to alert a carer or relative that an individual may be about to fall. Falls prevention telecare equipment includes bed occupancy sensors and chair occupancy sensors.

Bed occupancy sensors

Bed occupancy sensors consist of a pad which when placed under your mattress can detect when you have left your bed and start a timer. They can be set to alert a carer or relative in another part of your home that you have got up from a bed and not returned within a preset time, e.g.15 minutes, so that they can check you are ok, perhaps assisting you to minimise the risk of you falling. Alternatively, they can be set to trigger an alarm to your help centre if you have not returned to bed after the 15 minutes (or whatever time period has been preset). Many of these bed occupancy sensors can also automatically turn on a bedside light when you get out of bed. This helps minimise the risk of you falling over in the dark.

Chair occupancy sensors

Chair occupancy sensors work like bed occupancy sensors but are placed on a chair or wheelchair, when you stand they notify a carer by triggering a pager.

To view bed and chair occupancy sensors that can alert a carer before a potential fall click on the picture below

Automatically summoning help if you do fall

Fall detectors

This equipment includes fall detectors which can be worn on a cord around your neck, clipped to your belt or worn with a waist pouch accessory. These fall detectors will trigger an alarm if they detect a jolt and sense you are not in a standing position; this is what occurs in the majority of falls.

The fall detector automatically alerts your help centre who will then attempt to talk to you, via your telecare home unit, and listen to your description of what has occurred before deciding the most appropriate action to take. For example, they may need to call an ambulance for you. To view telecare fall detectors click on the picture below:

These fall detectors may not detect certain types of falls such as a slow fall sliding forward off a chair. Thus it is often good practice to have several different sensors, such as the above bed and chair occupancy sensors and PIR detectors (see below), all working together to protect you.

To read case studies where telecare fall detectors were used click on the pictures below:

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Case study:


Individuals often choose not to wear fall detector or pendants in bed or in the bathroom and thus if they do fall in the bathroom or when getting up from bed they have no means of summoning help. Consequently you may wish to fit a pull cord alarm in these locations. If you fall then you pull the cord to trigger the alarm call to your help centre. To view pull cords click on the picture below.

Passive Infra Red Detectors

Passive Infra Red detectors are also called 'movement detectors', and 'activity detectors'. They monitor your movement, but do NOT take pictures or video of you. Some can also work as inactivity detectors, if they do not sense movement in specific rooms for a prolonged period of time then they can trigger an alarm call to your help centre in case you have fallen over and are lying on the floor in another part of your house or garden.

Read more advice on preventing falls >>>

All advice is either supported by references (cited in the text) or is based upon peer reviewed professional opinion. Our advice is impartial and not influenced by sponsors or product suppliers listed on the site.
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