Everybody may fall. Often, younger people can experience minor injuries or none at all. But among seniors, falls are a different story. Falls are quite common among older adults and these can happen for many reasons like poor eyesight, infections, muscle weakness, home hazards, and balance or walking issues.
Falls cause fatal injuries and can also result in nonfatal injuries which range from moderate to severe like hip fractures, laceration, and head traumas. Apart from the physical effects, there are also psychological consequences, like developing the fear of falling which can limit their movements as well as deteriorate flexibility and strength. To prevent falls and minimize the negative consequences, here are some helpful tips.
Maintain a Balanced Diet
Essential vitamins, protein, and calcium are important for optimum health and maintaining a balanced diet can help seniors prevent risk injuries, weakness, and poor recovery from falls. Also, a diet that is rich in calcium may help in reducing a fall’s negative effects as calcium makes the bones strong.
Be Physically Active
Exercising regularly helps in improving leg strength and balance. This is quite essential for seniors to minimize the risk of falling while they move around their home and other environments. Water workouts, walking, or tai chi are perfect activities because these exercises are often not too strenuous. But, seniors must consult with their physician to know if they can engage in such workouts.
Get your Eyes Checked
Poor eyesight commonly causes falls. Sometimes, patients can perceive objects as being farther or closer than they are. In fact, they may not be able to see objects in their paths. In order to avoid accidents due to eye issues like cataracts and glaucoma, the eyes of a senior must be checked at least once every year. Also, seniors need to use updated eyeglasses for maximum vision.
A number of medications or combinations of medications can result in drowsiness and dizziness that could increase the risk of falls in seniors. In case you are taking more than three medications at a time, it’s a good idea to have a medication management plan and get your medications reviewed by your physician or pharmacist. You can manage your medication with the help of a professional provider of home care and companionship for seniors in Rocky Hill, CT.
Minimize Hazards in your House
There are a lot of things in the house that could increase the risk of falls in seniors. To minimize this, consider rearranging the furniture to make clear and wide paths for walking. Also, ensure rugs are not left lying on the floor. In areas where you spend much of your time, make sure there is an adequate lighting. Also, have grab rails installed in the kitchen, bathroom, and other areas in the home where falls may arise.
Don’t Do Risky Activities
Sometimes, seniors overestimate their abilities to perform some activities. Climbing ladders, standing on unsteady chairs, or moving without using the right device can increase the risk of falls. While refraining from performing such activities could limit your mobility, Rocky Hill Adult Day Center & In-Home Care wants to emphasize that it is essential to be cautious to avoid accidents which could result in more complications.
Use Mobility Aids
Walking aids like a cane or walker help reduce falls in elderly people with difficulty walking steadily. But, it is necessary to consult a physiotherapist first before using a walking aid as picking the wrong one could increase the risk of injuries caused by falls.
Consider an Evaluation for Fall Risk
Seniors prone to falls or want to know how high their risk for falls can go to a falls clinic. The clinic will assess them for risk factors like:
- Impaired maneuverability
- Impaired bearing, strength, and balance
- Nutritional problems
- Psychological or cognitive impairment
- Neurological problems like stroke and Parkinson’s disease
- Previous falls history
- Musculoskeletal problems like foot issues, deformity, joint replacement, and arthritis
- Chronic illnesses like lung disease, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis