As you get older, certain health conditions as well as physical changes can make falls more likely. Fall prevention has become the spotlight of trauma at hospitals. Falls aren’t good for anyone, but it’s very important to note that falls are the number one cause of injury which can lead to hospital visits due to trauma and can even result in death in people age 65 and older. One in three adults over the age of 65 have falls every year. It’s crucial to prevent falls before they happen and take the right steps to protect yourself or a loved one to avoid serious injury. However, you don’t need to let the fear of falling rule your life. We spoke with Stacy Johnson, Trauma Program Manager at Mountain View Hospital. She provided us with some very helpful tips that you can incorporate into your daily routine to prevent falls.
Here are a few of her recommendations—
- Do regular exercise such as Tai chi for balance
- Review your medication list with your doctor and make sure that there are no side effects that can cause dizziness or drowsiness
- Make sure to have your vision checked annually to ensure that you have the right eyeglass prescription
- Ensure that your home is safe by reducing tripping hazards such as having cords running through the room or lifted carpets
- Have night lights around your home to ensure that your home is well-lit at night
- Have items close on your night stand such as water or TV remote controls to reduce the chance of rolling and falling out of bed
- If you are prescribed a cane or a walker by a doctor, make sure to use it
- When getting out of bed, take a few minutes sitting on the side of the bed to make sure that you are not dizzy. Sometimes, your blood pressure can change when you go from a laying to sitting position which can be a cause of dizziness
- Put handrails on both sides of your staircases
It’s important to note that the recommendations listed above are just a few of the things that you can do to prevent falls for yourself or a loved one. If you need more information or are interested in other ways to prevent falls, be sure to reach out to your healthcare professional. Invest in tomorrow, practice fall prevention today!