Research has indicated that approximately one in three adults fall at least once per year. This can lead to serious foot injuries that can hinder completing daily activities. There are simple methods that can be implemented that may help to reduce falling episodes. When the lighting is improved in the household, it will become easier to see steps and obstacles that may be easy to trip over. Additionally, removing frayed rugs can reduce the number of falls incurred, and it is important to hold on to handrails while going up and down the steps. Many patients find it helpful to install grab bars in the shower and toilet area, and using a non-skid bathmat can provide stability in the shower. When a walker or cane is used, the sense of balance is often increased, and it is beneficial to keep a phone within reach in case a mishap occurs. It is helpful to have routine physical and eye exams performed, and this is needed to monitor existing medication and eyeglasses. If you would like more information about how falling can affect the feet, and effective fall prevention methods, please consult with 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 The Foot and Ankle Associates of North Carolina, PLLC. 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 clinician 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 our offices located in Ahoskie, Durham, Raleigh, and Rocky Mount, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.