For Fall Prevention Awareness Day, we have put together a list of what causes falls and how your physical therapy rehab practice can help your patients prevent falls.
What may cause people to fall:
- Poor musculoskeletal strength and endurance– Lack of exercise could cause loss of balance and reduced flexibility.
- Impaired vision– Eyesight worsens with age and could disrupt depth perception.
- Diseases and medication– Side effects could include dizziness, impaired vision and weakness.
- Surgeries– Some surgeries can decrease mobility and increase pain and weakness.
- Environmental obstructions– Hazards include loose carpets, poor lighting and clunky furniture.
What your practice can offer to your patients to prevent future falls:
- Offer a free Fall Assessment to your patients- Show your patients you care about their health.
- Demonstrate exercises to help maintain muscular skeleton strength and endurance- Balance is the key to preventing falls.
- Suggest they receive an eye exam and make sure eye prescription is up to date- Having clear vision and accurate depth perception is a great way to prevent falls.
- Discuss potential hazards in their home– Suggest they have hand rails and non-slip mats in bathrooms, reflective tape on furniture corners and stairs and install nightlights in rooms and hallways.
- Recommend they discuss the side effects of their medication with their physician- Even a change in the dosage could cause dizziness.
Keeping your patients educated about fall prevention will keep them happy and healthy. A happy patient is a returning and referring patient.