Falls are often mistaken to be a normal part of aging, when in fact there are many preventable factors at any age that put you at risk. Still, one out of four older adults in the United States fall each year, and one out of every five falls cause serious injuries such as broken bones or head injuries. These may cause disability that make getting around, daily activity, and independence difficult. The best way to prevent a fall is to know and eliminate factors that put you at risk. A little balance training through a physical therapy center like ours certainly helps as well.
Which Risk Factors Cause Falls?
Having a combination of risk factors puts you at greater risk. The following factors increase your risk; lower body weakness, Vitamin D deficiency, difficulty walking, certain medications such as over-the-counter and herbal remedies, vision problems, Vertigo, Dizziness, foot pain, poor footwear, hazards like broken or uneven ground, steps, or clutter. Physical and Vestibular Therapies treat many of these factors by improving balance. There are also other steps you can take to prevent risk.
What Steps Can You Take to Prevent Falling?
1. Talk to your doctor about your potential risk factors.
2. Physical, Vestibular, and Balance Therapy to build your coordination and reduce vertigo/ dizziness.
3. Stay active — gentle exercise improves strength, balance, coordination, and flexibility to lower your risk.
4. Make sure your home is clutter-free and well-lit.
5. Use Assistive Devices such as handrails for stairways, treads for wood floors, and shower bars or seats.
When Should You Take These Steps?
It is never too soon to take action and prevent a potentially dangerous incident. Especially if you are an older adult, experience balance issues, or have risk factors. Why wait for the first fall, or until one causes an injury? The best time to prevent a fall is as soon as you are at risk, and some measures can be helpful to pursue even before risk.
Fill out the form below or call Advantage Therapy Centers at (856) 424-2000 to ask for a physical therapy appointment for Vertigo, Dizziness, foot/leg injuries, or balance.