Do you have a fall prevention strategy in place?
Falls and fall-related injuries are a common and serious problem for older people. People aged 65 and older have the highest risk of falling, with 30% of people older than 65 and 50% of people older than 80 falling at least once a year.
Some of the risk factors for falling include: previous falls, balance impairment, decreased muscle strength, visual impairment, polypharmacy (taking more than 4 medications), walking difficulty, dizziness, age older than 80, cognitive impairment, arthritis, diabetes and pain.
The more risk factors someone has, the higher the risk for falling. In the past, fall prevention programs were readily available through community hospitals or addressed in group fitness for the elderly. COVID has resulted in the cancellation of many group classes and falls prevention programs, but the risk of falling has not changed.
How can a physiotherapist help with fall prevention?
Seeing a physiotherapist in a clinic setting allows for a more hands on experience. This means the falls prevention program is tailored specifically to you at the end of your assessment.
- A physiotherapist can assess your risk of falling and provide guidance towards exercises and activities that are safe and can prevent further risks.
- We can assess and treat any limitations in range of motion and strength and provide a specific exercise program that targets those areas.
- We can supervise the exercise program in the clinic, in a safe and controlled environment
- We can keep you accountable and ensure you’re building up your endurance and tolerance for activity so you can more confidently engage in your beloved activities and maintain your independence.
Having improved strength and mobility will allow you to do more and enjoy life to its fullest. If you’re worried about your falls risk, or someone you love, speak to one of our physiotherapists today.