If you notice you are unsteady or have experienced a fall, Beaumont Rehab can help. Our goal is to reduce the fear of falling and improve health and fitness.
Several factors related to age can contribute to falls, including:
- decreased vision and depth perception
- slowed reflexes
- decreased muscle strength and range of motion
- decreased hearing
- postural changes
These age-related changes can reduce sensory information and the speed of appropriate balance reaction. Individuals are also at higher risk of falling if they have a fear of falling, have had a fall in the past six months or multiple falls in the past
What can you do to decrease your chances of falling?
Falls are not inevitable – many can be prevented. Falling risk can be reduced if you:
- Begin a regular exercise program, which can improve strength and balance.
- Have your health care provider review your 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 cause you to fall.
- Have your vision checked 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 all falls happen at home. Checking for trip hazards, adequate lighting and installing handrails or grab bars can help prevent a fall from happening.
How can I get treatment?
You must first be evaluated and diagnosed by your physician. A referral is made for treatment and a prescription is given to authorize a physical therapist to evaluate you and customize a program of exercises to address your individual needs.
The therapist will use a number of tests and measures to determine your risk of falling. These tests focus on range of motion, muscle strength and sensation. The results will be used to create a personalized treatment program that may include exercise, balance retraining, gait training and education.