Falls are one of the most common causes of emergency room visits, and it is the leading cause of injury among older adults, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Regardless of the injury, falls can greatly impact quality of life for older adults often due to fear. If you or your loved one fears falling, you are more likely to limit your activity and suffer further physical decline social isolation and depression.
Don’t live in fear. There are clinically proven interventions to prevent most falls.
The risk of falling in older adults is usually related to a combination of factors, including:
- Balance and/or walking problems. Balance can be affected by vision changes, vestibular problems and altered sensation in the feet.
- The use of multiple medications. Studies indicate that when individuals take five or more medications, the risk of falls increase.
- Home hazards (including dim lighting and trip hazards)
- Positional low blood pressure
- Feet and footwear issues
The therapist will evaluate your risk of falling by assessing your balance, mobility and strength. An individual treatment plan will be developed that may include the following interventions.
- Therapeutic exercise to improve strength
- Balance-specific training to improve balance and vestibular function
- Home safety assessments and recommendations
- Patient education regarding footwear or assistive devices
- Communication with primary physician and pharmacist regarding medication.