Roughly 1 in 4 older adults fall annually, which is why it is important for people over 65 to practice various safety measures to reduce risks of falling. Exercises can be done to strengthen muscles and improve balance. Pharmaceuticals should be reviewed to eliminate any medicine that causes drowsiness or dizziness. Vision should be checked annually to update eyewear as prescriptions change. Homes should be made as fall-proof as possible by installing grab bars near toilets and in showers and railings on both sides of stairs. Clutter should be eliminated from walkways, bright lighting should be installed, and small rugs should be eliminated or taped down to avoid slippage. A trip to the podiatrist is also recommended for a thorough examination to ensure that feet and ankles are healthy. A gait analysis may also be performed to see if custom orthotics may help improve balance and mobility.
Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.
Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.
How to Prevent Falls
Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:
- Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
- Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
- Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
- Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
- Utilizing a walker or cane
- Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
- Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness
Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Havre de Grace, MD . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.