The risks of falling increase as we age. In fact, one in three people aged 65 years or older falls each year. The most common injuries that occur due to falls are to the hips and thighs, followed by injuries to the head. Fortunately, you can implement numerous strategies to significantly lower the chances of a fall.
Your doctor will be a great support by checking and reviewing your medications, assessing your bone health and blood pressure. Your doctor will also be able to make any other necessary recommendations to ensure your safety.
Know Your Medications
Be aware of the side effects of any medications you are taking and review regularly. Common side effects can include vision changes and dizziness which can affect your balance.
Invest In Good Footwear
Nowadays, footwear technology is incredibly advanced. Wearing shoes that offer comfort and safety is an excellent way to prevent falls. Look for footwear that is non-slip, offers adequate support to stabilize your feet to avoid pain or possible injury.
Maintain an active lifestyle. Include movements and exercises that can increase muscle strength and improve balance to prevent falls.
Have Your Eyes Checked
Vision impairment increases with age and often contributes to falls in the elderly. This happens by misjudging the distance of a step or tripping over obstacles such as a rug. Since vision provides one of the key sensory inputs for the control of balance it is important to prioritize eye care to prevent falls.
Make Your Home Safe
Remove potential hazards from the home. This could include clutter, excess furniture, rugs or loose leads or cables. Install handrails for stairways that can assist you and ensure you have clear walkways throughout your home. Grab bars in the shower and toilet offer further protection. Consider investing in good lighting throughout your home especially between the bedroom and bathroom.
Be mindful to limit your alcohol intake. Since alcohol affects our balance, hearing and vision, minimizing your alcohol intake will minimize your risk of falls.
Take the time to create an action plan for fall prevention or discuss this with your caregiver, support worker or doctor to decrease your risk of injury.