Every year millions of older adults are seen in the hospital for falling. Anyone that is over 65 has an increased chance of permanent damage from falls. There are many steps that you can take in order to keep your loved ones safe. Prevention is the key to keeping them safe. There are physical changes that you can make in the home. Keeping fit is another big change that can impact the future. Here are several prevention tips that you can incorporate in your life.
Causes of Falls in the Elderly
The older we get the more our bodies start to slow down and decay. There’s a reason we say “I’m not 25 anymore”. Some of the big things that start to change are your sensory functions. Your eyes and your ears are one of the first things that start to change. When your hearing and your sight start to fade it messes with your walking and how you view your surroundings. Muscles are the next problem. With the normal decrease in exercise, muscles tend to deteriorate and become weaker and weaker.
There are many precautions and things you can do to prevent falls. Preventing falls should be our top priority when revamping an elderly person’s home.
Fall Prevention Strategies
1. Visit Your Doctor and Address Medical Conditions
The most important thing you can do is make sure that you are as healthy as you can be. Many ailments can be solved or improved with a specialized doctor. Some of these will improve your chances of not falling or struggling to move around in your own home. Vision problems such as outdated prescription lenses can usually be modified to work better. Vision and hearing tests can be super beneficial in the long run. It shows you where you are at now and what way you are heading. Your Doctor can check a lot of your joints or other things that you may worry about.
2. Aim for Proper Nutrition
Diet is really important as you get older. When you eat healthy you feel healthy. Eating gives your brain a boost and helps you feel healthier. It also helps you when you exercise not to get too tired or have problems when you get your blood pumping. When you don’t eat or drink like you should, you can feel light headed, nauseated, or fatigued.
3. Get Regular Physical Exercise
Low impact exercise is the most beneficial for the elderly. Some examples of low impact training are swimming, walking, and working out on ellipticals. Consistency is the most important thing to remember. You can work out once a month and be benefited over the year but if you work out a couple times a week you can be benefited over a shorter period of time. It’s not just a physical benefit. There are numerous studies showing that a physical work will help you both mentally and emotionally
4. Make the Home Safe
There are numerous ways to help prevent the elderly from falling. Removing tripping hazards is one way that may not seem that big of a deal but can more than double the chance of a fall. Decluttering goes along with removing tripping hazards. When there are hutches and cabinets sticking a couple feet out on every wall in the house, it can be dangerous. The transition from carpet to hardwood can also be a slipping and tripping hazard that some don’t think about. Walk in bathtubs and showers are an easy decision. This is perhaps one of the most dangerous spots in the home. If you make the bathroom safe you can have a stronger peace of mind. One last thing that isn’t discussed is the lighting inside the home. If the eyesight is going bad then they need to see things more clearly and visibly. Make sure to upgrade the lighting in your loved ones home.
5. Wear the correct Clothing and Footwear
Wearing the right shoes is a game changer. If your shoes are too big or too small that is the first thing that needs to change. Slip ons are up for debate. They are very valuable for getting on easily but can be dangerous laying around the house and can fall off of your feet. Look for shoes with good traction and that feel natural. Clothing is also important, staying warm is crucial, you also don’t want it to be too bulky so that it can catch on things or that it might be harder to move. Make sure to think about what you are putting on.
6. Use Assistance Devices
Most of the people that need the assistance don’t want the help. They want to continue living their young life. First off, don’t hesitate to put pull up bars or helpful hand grips. A device that can call for help always brings peace of mind to your loved ones. When walking through the home make sure to use a cane or walking stick to improve your stability.
Assisting Hands has caregivers trained specifically for your needs. They have been trained how to deal with your specific issues. They can help with laundry, light cleaning, cooking, and most importantly the feeling like you have someone you can count on. We are renowned for our quality caregivers and our affordable prices. You can have someone you can trust.