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Strategies for Preventing Falls

Tuesday, 21 May 2024 00:00

Preventing falls among older adults is paramount to maintaining quality of life and independence. Various factors contribute to an increased risk of falls in seniors. Among them are muscle weakness, gait abnormalities, and pain. Additionally, certain health conditions like inner ear problems, vision impairment, and arthritis can negatively affect balance and mobility. Medications, such as those for blood pressure and sleep disorders, can induce side effects that increase susceptibility to falls. Through comprehensive assessments and evaluations, a podiatrist can tailor interventions to reduce fall risks. These may involve strength, gait, and balance tests, blood pressure monitoring and vision assessments. Incorporating balance exercises and strength training into daily routines can significantly enhance mobility and stability, thereby reducing the likelihood of falls. Activities targeting core and leg muscles are particularly beneficial, as they play a vital role in maintaining balance and coordination. Using assistive devices, such as canes, walkers or wheelchairs, can provide additional support and safety for individuals with mobility limitations. If you are a senior and have fallen recently or experience balance problems, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a thorough exam to determine what the reason is.

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. Robbi Young from Grand Haven Foot & Ankle. 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 Grand Haven, MI . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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