The fear of falling becomes more common as people age, even among those who haven't fallen. Overcoming this fear can help seniors stay active and prevent future falls. Doing things like getting together with friends, gardening, walking, or going to the local senior center can help you stay healthy. The good news is, there are many ways to help prevent falls.
“As we age, we are continuously challenged to defy gravity,” says Dr. Dorothy Baker, PhD, Director of the Connecticut Collaboration for Fall Prevention (CCFP) at Yale University School of Medicine. “What makes us vulnerable to gravity is the fact that certain systems of our bodies are not working at peak performance. Many people have been weakened by unhealthy lifestyles, chronic disease, illness, and injury. We have to de-emphasize the environment as the reason why we fall and instead focus on how we can better interact with the environment in order to stay on our feet.”
There are 6 factors that relate to falls:
If you do happen to fall, stay still on the floor for a moment and take a few deep breaths to try to relax. This will help you gather your thoughts and determine if you are hurt before attempting to get up. If you have a Medical Alert pendant you will want to push it so that responders can be alerted to your fall incident.
A fall is a time sensitive event. Getting help to someone in under 20 minutes provides for the best outcomes. A Medical Alert system provides 2-way communication with a response associate to get the appropriate assistance in a reasonable amount of time. Today’s Medical Alerts systems are shower safe and not only work around the home but are mobile and can offer automatic falls detection should a person fall, and they are unable to call for help.
Ty Strahl is the areas leading senior adviser. Her job is to help you navigate the many aspects of aging and to help seniors who are in transition to find the right solutions for their individual needs.