Study: Preventing Falls in the Aging

According to the Director of the Martha Stewart Center for Living, by the year 2030, 20% of the Nation's population will be over 65 — making for more than 70 million older Americans. She also says that every year, a third of adults over 65 will fall. The number grows when applied to elderly adults living in a nursing home.

The key, she says, to treating falls is prevention. For people who are falling due to lack of balance, there are physical-therapy regimens and balance exercises like yoga and t’ai chi that can increase both balance and strength. “That’s a great choice if you’re seeking nonmedication options,” says the Director.

In addition to balance problems, sometimes a vision problem exists that needs to be corrected. The study also mentions that it is important to check if any of your medications can increase your chance of falling.

Another change that can be made is to fall-proof the home.This can be done by adding grip bars in the bathrooms and removing obstacles that may be trip hazards throughout the home. It is also crucial to stay active. Not just physically but mentally and socially, as well.

Lastly the study recommends that falls be taken seriously. Some people think there’s nothing they can do to prevent falls, but research has shown that doing low-impact exercises and making strategic decisions around your house can make a big difference. For more, read the story.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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