The statistics for falls experienced by seniors age 65 and over are alarming. Falling is a major concern for this age group and in fact one in every 3 adults in this category falls each year, resulting in injuries which are classified moderate to severe. These falls can lead to hip fractures, head trauma, hospitalization and even death. The amazing part is that most falls can be prevented. If proper precautions are taken, the risk for fall injuries would be significantly reduced!
An elderly care provider can assist your loved one in taking part in exercises and activities that are strengthening and known to reduce fall risks. There are other things that can be done in the home to reduce falls as well.
6 Ways for senior adults to avoid a debilitating fall
1) Maintain good vision. Elderly persons should have an eye exam regularly each year so that any issues or problems can be detected. Eyeglasses should be kept up to date with the current prescriptions so vision can be maximized.
2) Avoid issues with medication interactions. A physician should be consulted before over the counter medications are taken which may react with prescription medications already being taken. These interactions can cause drowsiness, dizziness, loss of physical strength, etc.
3) Maintain a safe home environment by cleaning up the living space. Throw rugs should be tossed out, there should be no electrical cords making a tripping hazard, and living areas should be clean and cleared of all clutter. Seniors can’t see things placed on the floor as easily and may walk right into it and fall. There should be adequate lighting for all areas of the home during the day as well as night lights placed strategically to light the way from the bedroom to the bathroom for trips to the toilet at night.
4) Osteoporosis is a common problem which should be avoided or treated. This is done by making sure there is adequate vitamin D and calcium in the diet. Nutritious foods and adequate supplements should also be taken.
5) Exercise regularly and take part in physical activities. Remaining as active as they possibly can definitely minimizes the falling risk for seniors. Some good examples of balance and leg strengthening exercises are yoga, Tai Chi and stretching. Walking is also excellent. Of course, consult your loved one’s physician for approval before entering her into a physical activity program.
6) Education about fall prevention and encouragement to avoid taking risks that could result in a fall. Seniors may tend to minimize the negative consequences of falling and may think it will never happen to them. Encourage them to look on the bright side and it’s better to avoid a risk of falling than take one!
If you have a loved one who could benefit from elderly care in Alamo, CA contact the caregivers at Hillendale Home Care. We help seniors and their families with many levels of home care service. Call (925) 948-8280 for more information.