Top three ways you can prevent a fall

Falling is a major cause of trauma in the Valley, just behind motor vehicle accidents. While you can never completely prevent a fall from happening, you can control the impact they have, and your future quality of life. Here are three tips to help prevent a tumble:

1) Exercise

Your bones can rebuild themselves when you apply weight to them. This means the simple act of walking can help strength the bones in your legs, helping them withstand breaks. Walking also strengthens muscles and helps keep nerve pathways active. This increases your reaction time to turn a potential fall into a stumble.

2) Assess your home

Walk through your home and identify areas that could pose a fall hazard, and then take steps to make changes if you can. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Look for tripping hazards on your floors. Rugs, cords and cluttered hallways each pose a threat. Watch for these and avoid them at places you visit.
  • In the bathroom, consider installing grab bars for your shower.
  • Make sure you have good lighting throughout your living areas. Switches should be close by and easy to reach, especially in the bedroom and bathrooms.
Help prevent falls with these quick tips

3) Understand your medication's impact on your balance

Be familiar with your medication(s), and be sure your primary care physician and pharmacist are aware of everything you are taking. It is important to review them regularly, or when a new medication is added to your regimen. This can be done with your pharmacist during business hours.

Many medications can cause drowsiness and/or dizziness, and increase the potential for falling. Mixing medications also can cause side effects. Talk to your pharmacist if you need more information about the ones you're taking.

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