Aging: Fall Prevention
Each year, one in every three adults age 65 and older falls. Falls can cause moderate to severe injuries, such as hip fractures and head traumas, and can increase the risk of early death. Fortunately, falls are a public health problem that is largely preventable.
How can older adults prevent falls?
- Exercise regularly. It is important that the exercises focus on increasing leg strength and improving balance, and that they get more challenging over time. Tai Chi programs are especially good.
- Ask their doctor or pharmacist to review their medicines-both prescription and over-the counter-to identify medicines that may cause side effects or interactions such as dizziness or drowsiness.
- Have their eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and update their eyeglasses to maximize their vision. Consider getting a pair with single vision distance lenses for some activities such as walking outside.
- Make their homes safer by reducing tripping hazards, adding grab bars inside and outside the tub or shower and next to the toilet, adding stair railings and improving the lighting in their homes.
To lower their hip fracture risk, older adults can:
- Get adequate calcium and vitamin D-from food and/or from supplements.
- Do weight bearing exercise.
- Get screened and treated for osteoporosis.
See full article in Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
For more information: www.cdc.gov
P.S. Yoga improves balance and coordination.