Aging presents many different issues and risks. Growing older makes a person more susceptible to falling due to weakness of muscles and an increase in frailness of bones.
Signs of an increased fall risk include:
- Having difficulty getting up from a chair or couch
- Using objects such as tables, counter tops, or rails to steady balance when getting up or walking
- Inability to balance for more than five seconds.
- If falling has occurred previously
A few ways to decrease the risk of falling:
- Make time to exercise at few times a week. It is important to remain active and strengthen the muscles, which will also aid in balance and coordination.
- Remove cords, wires, or clutter on the floor that may present as an obstacle.
- Know the side effects from medication. Medication can sometimes make a person dizzy or sleepy. Talk to the doctor if this is affecting balance.
- Make sure to have adequate lighting in the home. Replace light bulbs that are not working or bright. Make sure the lighting is not overly bright since that can affect vision. This will help prevent tripping or running into objects around the house.
- Install handrails in the bathroom to help get up and also prevent falling in the shower.
- Visit the optometrist to get vision checked. This is really important because it can prevent falling and tripping over objects.
- If a fall has happened previously, it is important to tell the doctor. Physical therapy, different medication, or a walking aid might be recommended.