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Risk Factors That Can Contribute to Falls

Tuesday, 15 February 2022 00:00

There are a number of risk factors that can contribute to falling. Among the most common are foot problems – such as bunions, corns or ingrown toenails – which can change the way you walk and affect your balance. Footwear that is inappropriate for certain activities, and weak muscles caused by inactivity, arthritis, or lack of exercise, can also put you at risk. Numbness in the feet, which may be a result of diabetes, can be a further risk for falling. Other factors include drinking too much alcohol, medication that may cause dizziness, poor balance, and even vision problems. Many of these risk factors can be common among older adults, but may be apparent in people of all ages. If your foot problems are causing you to lose your balance frequently, it may be time to see a podiatrist for treatment options that can help you live a safer life.  

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with Cory Brown, DPM from Brown Foot and Ankle. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Abilene, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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