Fall Prevention And How Physiotherapy Helps
In fact, the financial consequences of falls are only the tip of the iceberg. For many seniors a fall is the beginning of a process of decline, leading to fear of falling, increased mobility restrictions, decreased independence and function and, in many cases, institutionalization. The fear of falling often precipitates an increased risk of and incidence of falls.
Could you be at risk of falling?
- Have you had a fall in the last year?
- Are you taking four or more medications a day?
- Do you have Parkinson’s disease or a history of stroke?
- Do you feel you have any balance problems?
- Are you able to stand up from a chair without using your arms for support?
- Are you limiting what you do due to fear of falling?
If you answered YES to three or more of the above questions then you are at high risk of falling and could benefit from the help of a physiotherapist.
Go to this link to find out more on what can be done to prevent a fall. http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/4356.asp
How can physiotherapy help?
A physiotherapist will assess your risk of falling based on your health and will develop an activity program just for you. This will include some exercises to strengthen your legs and improve your balance. They will also discuss options for being active in a way that suits you. Keeping on the move is really important. Your physiotherapist can help with:
- Improving your balance and strength
- Education on how to reduce your risk of falling
- Designing an activity program to suit your needs
- Advice on how to make your home safer
- Teaching you safe ways to get up if you do have a fall
- Showing you how to keep active
- Getting you involved in a community-based exercise program
Some physiotherapists offer home visits and they can make sure your home is as safe as possible to reduce your risk of falling. Movement of certain furniture and adding support at the right locations can make your house a safer and fall free environment. This might include stronger lightingand removing rugs from bare floors because you can slip and fall. Physiotherapists can also advise you on suitable footwear and walking aids if you need them.
Exercise is really important for reducing the risk of falls. Lack of exercise leads to poor muscle tone, decreased strength and loss of bone mass – all of these factors can contribute to falls and the severity of injury after a fall. A physiotherapist will be able to advise you on the amount and type of exercise best for you.
In the end, to prevent a fall, you ought to incorporate healthier lifestyle, from your diet to your exercise.