Preventing Falls

Fall PreventionEach year, millions of adults aged 65 and older fall, resulting in moderate to severe injuries, such as hip fractures and head traumas.

As we age, time takes its toll on the bodily systems that keep us balanced and standing upright. For example, you may not see or hear as well, which can affect your coordination. Nerves that carry information from your brain to your muscles may fray and deteriorate, slowing your reaction time and making it more difficult to move away from oncoming pedestrians or adjust to icy patches on a sidewalk. Normal declines in muscle strength and joint flexibility can hinder your ability to stand, walk and rise from chairs.

How to prevent falls

  • Exercise regularly. It is important that the exercises focus on increasing leg strength and improving balance, and that they get more challenging over time.
  • Older adults should have their eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and update their eyeglasses to maximize their vision.
  • Make homes safer by reducing tripping hazards, adding grab bars inside and outside the tub or shower and next to the toilet, adding railings on both sides of stairways, and improving lighting.

Reduce Your Risk of Falling

  • Always stand up slowly after sitting or lying down. Quickly changing positions may drop your blood pressure, causing dizziness.
  • Use a cane, walking stick or walker, especially on uneven or unfamiliar paths.
  • Stay away from wet and icy surfaces, or use sand or salt to make them safer.
  • To reach objects above your head, use reach sticks or special grabbing tools.
  • Have your vision and hearing checked regularly.
  • Make sure you can reach the phone from the floor and from your bed. If you live alone, ask someone to check on you once a day. Or consider paying for an emergency-monitoring company that responds to your call for help 24 hours a day.

For more information about how to reduce your risk of falling, call 812-373-3376 to make an appointment at Family Chiropractic and Wellness today.