How to Lower Your Risk of Falling

older woman balancing on a pole outsideDid you know that emergency room doctors treat an older adult for a fall every 11 seconds? And that one in four adults over 65 fall each year?

Falls shouldn’t be a normal part of aging. All too often, these incidents are caused by muscle weakness, poor balance, dizziness, and other environmental factors. Unfortunately, having fallen in the past increases your risk of falling again. Falls can also lead to broken bones, concussions, and other adverse health events. They can even become more common due to decreased balance, muscle mass, and reaction time as we age.

But there are many things you can do to prevent falls. You can start by visiting a MOTION physical therapist.

The therapists at MOTION can help assess your fall risk and address any challenges you may have that can contribute to falls. After a thorough examination, they can help you with balance training, range of motion exercises, and strengthening activities to help decrease your risk of falling. Learn more about our fall prevention program.

In addition to working with a physical therapist, there are other steps you can take to prevent losing your balance:

  1. Review your medications with your doctor or pharmacist. Simply taking more than four medications at once can increase your risk of falls. Some drugs may also have side effects that affect your balance. It’s important to discuss your medication regimen with your healthcare provider.
  2. Get your vision and hearing checked. There are three main balance systems in the human body, including the eyes and inner ear. Problems in any of these locations can have a negative impact on your balance. An updated prescription for glasses or getting your ear checked can help prevent problems down the road.
  3. Keep your home safe. Many people fall at home after tripping on area rugs or slippery bathroom floors or while fumbling in the dark. Remove small hazards, install grab bars in the bathroom, and add night lights throughout your home to reduce your risk.

There are many things you can do to help lower your chance of falling and getting hurt. Contact our skilled team of therapists at MOTION today to help prevent falls!