Fall Prevention

Each year, one in three people over the age of sixty-five will experience a fall. This is an eye-opening statistic for many. The question is, are you doing anything to prevent falls? If not, you should. Here are four things you can do now to help reduce your chances of falling.

Step One: Visit Your DoctorYou should see your doctor if you haven't recently and have him check your medications. Some medications for blood pressure, depression, and allergies can affect your balance.If you have noticed a steep drop-off in your stability, your doctor may want to screen for any of a number of diseases that can affect balance. You should also have your eyes and ears checked since they both play a big role in maintaining equilibrium.

Step Two: Fall-proof Your HomeTake a tour of your house and look for anything that could cause you to trip. Area rugs and electric cords are notorious tripping hazards. You can also consider plugging in a night-light in the hallway and the bathroom so you don't stumble on your way to the bathroom during the night. Also, make sure the railings along the stairs are strong enough to support your weight when you lean on them.

Step Three: Train Your BalanceMany seniors know that you can train your heart and muscles, but few are aware that you can also train your balance. A balance exercise involves putting your body into a slightly unstable position. This can include standing with one foot in front of the other like you're on a balance beam, or standing on one foot. Just place your feet in the correct position and try to hold it there for ten to twenty seconds.

You should always do balance exercises next to something that you can hold on to if you need it, like a sturdy doorknob or the back of a couch. Balance exercises can be done daily.

Step Four: Strengthen Your Legs

In addition to making daily life a lot easier, strong legs can also help catch you if you trip. The easiest thing to do to strengthen your legs is to use them more. Walk around the block. Take the stairs. Practice standing up and sitting down from a chair. Work in your yard. Anything that uses your legs will help them get a little stronger.

This multi-pronged approach can greatly reduce your chances of falling. So go schedule your next check-up, examine your home for tripping hazards, and start doing exercises for balance and leg strength.

By Mike Ross

Senior fitness expert Mike Ross is the author of "The Balance Manual." To learn more about balance exercises and other fall prevention techniques, be sure to get his free senior balance report.Article Source: http://www.ArticleBiz.com

1 Response

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