Depending on a number ofcircumstances, if you answer “yes” to any ONE of the questions below, eitherfor yourself or for your loved one, there could be a significant risk offalling. A fall can change the course of a life due to fracture, subsequenthospitalization, and loss of independence. Not everyone who falls sustains aserious injury but if there have been previous falls, there will likely bemore.
Sometimes simply adding somegrab bars, removing scatter rugs and ‘other tripping hazards can make adifference. Sometimes attending a balance class adds stability to ambulationand other times a look at medications is in order. It is always better to besafe and cautious before a fall happens, rather than regret that the risk wentunnoticed or unaddressed. Dealing with the aftermath of a fall, particularlywith a senior, is much more serious and difficult than takingprecautions.
Do you or your loved one…
experience lightheadedness or dizziness upon standing?
have experience falling or nearly falling in the past year?
take four or more medications?
take medication for sleep, anxiety, depression, or pain?
worry about falling?
wear bifocal or trifocals?
have a sedentary lifestyle?
have vision better in one eye than the other?
feel unsteady in the supermarket aisle?
feel off-balance when trying to walk in a straight line?
shuffle your feet when you walk?
find it hard to move your feet sometimes?
experience numbness or tingling in your feet?
find uneven surfaces or walking in the dark difficult?
when lying down or tilting your head back, experience a spinning sensation or dizziness?
Steps you can take tominimize risk and create a safe environment include contacting a senior homemodification specialist, researching information about falls online, talking toan in-home care agency, eldercare manager, caregiver, or physician. You alsomight want to research classes in your area that focus on improving stabilityand balance.
If you have any questions or would like to be in touch with aSenior Care Authority Advisor in your area call (888)854-3910 for a no-costphone consultation. We have many resources to share with you. You can also finda local advisor on our website at www.seniorcareauthority.com.
Marcy Baskin is an Elder Care Manager, and Managing Director ofSenior Care Authority. She is also the author ofAssistedLiving: Questions I Wish I Had Asked.