Preventing Falls Four Thins You Can Do

Begin a Regular Exercise Program

Not sure where to start? Ask your doctor or health care provider about the best type of exercise for you. Exercise is one of the most important ways to lower your chances of falling. It makes you stronger and helps you feel better. Exercises that improve balance and coordination are the most helpful, including exercises in the pool. Lack of exercise leads to weakness and increases your chance of falling. With over fifty classes offered each week in the LIfestyle Fitness Center, you’re sure to find the perfect class for you!

Ask Your Health Care Provider to Review Your Medicines

Have your doctor or pharmacist review all the medicines you take, even over-the-counter medicines. As you get older, the way medicines work in your body can change. Some medicines, or combinations of medicines, can make you sleepy or dizzy and can cause you to fall. If you notice any new symptoms when starting medications or when dosages have changed, notify your doctor immediately.

Have Your Vision Checked

Have your eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year. You may be wearing the wrong glasses or have a condition like glaucoma or cataracts that limits your vision. Poor vision can increase your chances of falling.

Make Your Home Safer

About half of falls happen at home. To make your home safer:

  • Remove things you can trip over (papers, books, clothes, and shoes) from places where you walk.
  • Remove small throw rugs or use double-sided tape to keep the rugs from slipping.
  • Keep items you use often in cabinets you can reach easily without using a step stool.
  • Have grab bars put in next to your toilets and in the tub or shower.
  • Use non-slip mats in the bathtub and on shower floors.
  • Improve the lighting in your home. As you get older, you need brighter lights to see well. Hang light-weight curtains or shades to reduce glare.
  • Wear shoes both inside and outside the house. Avoid going barefoot or wearing slippers, especially if you have diabetes, neuropathy, or numbness in your feet.
  • Use your assistive device in your home as well as the community. Using the wall or furniture for stability is not safe.

Contributed by: Shannon Radford, PVN Wellness Director (Reprinted from the October 2019 and 2018 Village Bugle)