One moment you’re reaching for that teapot on the upper shelf of your kitchen. The next, you’re on the floor writhing in pain, chastising yourself for having not been more careful.
It’s oh too common. One-third of people aged 65 years and over typically fall once or more in any calendar year, and nearly one-half of people in long-term care facilities were admitted because they had a fall.
Break your hip, and it can be even worse. Half of those who do, never regain their pre-fall level of functioning. The good news? There is plenty you can do to help prevent falls from happening.
Naturally, you can’t entirely eliminate the risk of falling (short of sitting in your chair all day and not going anywhere). Yet there are precautions you can take.
So, what contributes to a fall?
It’s all about balance. Having a lack of stability or the inability to recover your balance is the most common reason for falls.
There are a number of factors that contribute to a lack of balance:
What can you do?
The three most beneficial actions you can take are: exercise, exercise and exercise. Whether it’s Tai Chi, chair yoga, resistance training in the gym or Nordic walking, it’s important to keep your muscles on the move. You’ll retain strength and balance to help prevent a weakening of the muscles that can lead to a fall. The other benefit is that if you DO fall, stronger muscles will help you cushion the fall and help protect the bones against possible breaks.
Through PARC Retirement Living’s Independent Living+ program, we have a full complement of resources and services to help promote your health through active aging. We offer exercise classes, a gym, wellness nurse, chauffeur service, PARC SMART nutritional options and more. By actively utilizing these resources, you’ll be doing your best to prevent muscle deterioration, helping to prevent falls.