Falling is NOT an inevitable result of aging.
Some people believe falling is just part of growing older, but this is not the case. Yet, falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries among seniors. An older adult is treated every 13 seconds in an emergency room in the U.S. for a fall related injury. Every 19 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall.
Have you experienced a fall?
If you are over 65 you have likely either already taken a tumble or spent time worrying about doing so. Falling is scary, particularly if you live alone. It’s important to be proactive to decrease your risk of falling with appropriate lifestyle changes, education about falls prevention, and effective medication management.
COMMON CAUSES OF FALLS
Lower body weakness
Problems balancing or walking.
Hazards in your home such as loose throw rugs, uneven steps, floor clutter, or the lack of handrails in the bathroom or staircase
Foot pain or inappropriate footwear
Vitamin D deficiency
Medications such as: tranquilizers, sedatives, heart medicine, and/or psychotropic drugs
HOW TO DECREASE YOUR RISK
Ask your doctor to assess your risk of falling
Participate in a balance or exercise program to build flexibility and strength
Discuss medications and possible interactions with your physician or pharmacist, including over the counter drugs and supplements
Check your vision and hearing every year
Wear properly fitted and comfortable shoes appropriate for your lifestyle
Make your home safe: eliminate floor clutter, install grab bars and railings in the bathroom and by stairs, add proper lighting, secure throw rugs to the floor and place frequently used items within easy reach
Falls, or even fears about falling, threaten our safety and independence. Many worry about falling and limit their activities and social engagements as a result. Decreasing interaction with others can lead to isolation and depression.
The Bottom LIne:
Do not wait until you fall to take action! Take good care of yourself and your health to avoid becoming one of the statistics. It may be a good idea to enlist support from friends and family to help you lower your risk of falling.
Pattani, PharmD, RPh is the Pharmacist-in-charge/Owner at Allen Pharmacy & Wellness, a full-service retail pharmacy providing individualized patient care. Dr. Pattani is also the owner of PrevInteract Health, a pharmacy consulting company focused on helping individuals taking 3 or more medications prevent drug-drug, drug-food and drug-supplement interactions to decrease necessary hospitalizations. Contact Dr. Pattani at 972-372-9775 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Allen Pharmacy and Wellness is located at 945 W Stacy Rd, Suite 110, Allen, Tx 75013. AllenPharmacyWellness.com