Falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries for Americans aged 65+. These falls can lead to serious injuries, including fractures, abrasions, cognitive impairment, or even death. Older adults are the most at risk to fall, and consequently the most likely to suffer a serious injury that will require the care of health care professionals. Even without an injury, a fall can bring about anxiety and make an older adult anxious about remaining active.
Here are a few methods that can help an older adult avoid a fall:
- Practice strengthening exercises. Light hand weights or exercises such as swimming are great ways to help build muscle and increase overall strength.
- Walking and stretching! We know that walking and regular exercise is good for us, and should be incorporated in our daily lives. Better overall physical health is one of the great benefits of regular cardio exercise, which will help reduce the chances of a fall.
- Remove obstacles that are in the way. We are all prone to tripping over objects, but as we get older those falls can be more severe. Make sure walk ways are clear and wide enough to walk through.
- Improve lighting. Opening curtains and blinds to let in light during the day. Make sure light bulbs are working and that stairways are properly lit.
- Practice bathroom safety. Bathrooms are a common place for falls to occur. Ensure that you have grab bars near toilets and showers, and consider a shower chair if necessary.
- Get an eye exam. Make sure your eye prescription is current, and talk with your optometrist about any concerns you may have about falling. Don’t forget to wear your glasses as prescribed!
- Check for medication side effects that could increase the chances of a fall. Some prescription medications have common side effects such as tiredness, light headedness, and dizziness.
How can Retirement Living help?
Many of the above issues have already been considered and addressed in retirement communities.
- We offer daily exercise classes and equipment designed to meet the needs of older adults.
- We have over nine acres of beautiful walking trails on our beautifully maintained grounds.
- Our residences are designed with the senior in mind, offering spacious floor plans, wide hallways and well-lit common areas.
- Our maintenance staff are available to help with chores such as changing light bulbs and moving items from a tall shelf. No step stools needed!
- Each of our apartment bathrooms comes equipped with grab bars and options for standing showers with room for a shower chair if needed.
- In assisted living, our staff are available to help our residents manage their medications so that they stay on track.
- In assisted living, there are even more layers of protection. With caregivers on site 24/7, there are always qualified staff to assist should a resident experience a fall at any time of the day or night.
The good news is that most falls can be prevented. Winnwood Retirement Community offers both independent living and assisted living options with these safety measures already in place designed to offer peace of mind in retirement living.