Balance problems and falls among older adults is a far-reaching problem. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in four adults falls each year. Balance problems are the product of many causes and can seriously injure a person. The origins of a balance problem may include one of the following reasons:
It is crucial that you see your doctor if you are experiencing problems with balance. Be ready to answer questions regarding the medications you may be taking, any history of falls, and health conditions you might be experiencing.
Physical activity can be a big help against falls. Activities such as walking, water workouts, or tai chi can reduce your risk of falls by improving strength, balance, coordination, and flexibility. If you fear falling while working out, talk to your primary care physician about your concerns. Your doctor may prescribe a carefully monitored exercise program.
If you take a hard look at your home, you will probably find many hazards. To make your home a safer place from falls, consider the following:
If you are experiencing balance problems and falling, your doctor may prescribe the use of a cane or walker. Other devices that may help include handrails, non-slip treads for steps, a raised toilet seat, and grab bars for the bathtub. You may consider requesting a referral to an occupational therapist who can help you with fall-prevention strategies.
To keep your home safe from falls, keep it brightly lit. Place night lights in your bedroom. Put a lamp within reach of your bed. Please try to keep the paths that lead to a light clear at all times. Always turn on the lights before going down the stairs. Store flashlights in easy to find locations.
Virtual health care is changing healthcare dramatically. This technology extends care into your home allowing a physician to treat and monitor you from a distance. These devices are ideal for monitoring patients with phobias, addictions, and now balance disorders. Not only does this virtual technology provide you with convenience and flexibility, but it can also keep you safe.
Numerous research studies identify hearing loss leading to cognitive decline, which leads to an increase in the risk for falls and other injuries. There are multiple high-tech hearing devices available to correct hearing loss, deliver speech recognition, and improve one’s overall ability to hear. Hearing devices can also add a measure of safety against balance problems.
Balance problems or not, it is vital to have your hearing checked regularly. Please schedule a hearing evaluation with a hearing healthcare professional today. These professionals can diagnose a hearing or balance problem and design a treatment program for you.