Monday, 24 August 2020 00:00

Taking Action to Prevent Falls

Falls, and the resulting injuries and complications that they can bring about, are a major cause of pain and disability among people aged 65 and over. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), behavioral changes and changes to your living environment are the most effective things that you can do to prevent falls. Embracing a healthy lifestyle that includes a balanced diet, exercise, and no smoking encourages healthy aging, which can indirectly reduce the risk of falling. Rearranging the home environment to remove fall hazards such as slippery rugs, and installing good lighting and handrails, can also help prevent falls. Having regular checkups and promptly seeing specialists when needed is important for overall health as well. Foot and ankle pain often contributes to falls, so if you are experiencing foot and ankle issues, it is recommended that you see a podiatrist.

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 one of our podiatrists from New England Foot and Ankle. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Chelmsford and Newburyport, MA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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