According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most common reason people over 65 get injured is due to a fall. These injuries range from moderate (e.g., scrapes, bruises) to severe (e.g., hip fracture, head trauma, death). However, all these things can be prevented.
How to Prevent Falls in Seniors
Although falls pose such a significant public health problem, it’s good to know that most of them are preventable. However, the CDC has taken the time to outline some fall prevention tips that all seniors should know.
Get Routine Exercise
While any type of exercise is great when your goal is fall prevention, you’ll want to engage in those that increase your leg strength and improve your balance. One such exercise that you may want to consider getting involved with is Tai Chi.
Review Your Medications with Your Pharmacist
Both over-the-counter and prescriptions have side effects and various interactions. These side effects can include dizziness and drowsiness, which is why it’s essential to consider them when making a fall prevention plan for your loved one.
Have Your Hearing Checked
One thing that we rarely hear about is how improving hearing loss helps with fall prevention. There was recently a small study reported in Medical News Today. The study was conducted by researchers from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.
People with varying amounts of hearing loss participated in this study. Researchers asked them to stand heel-to-toe with their eyes covered. When someone had their hearing aids turned off, they could only stand steady for 5 seconds. However, when they turned their device on, they were able to stand for 10 seconds. As such, the study’s results showed that seniors who wear hearing aids to correct their poor hearing were less likely to fall.
When interviewed about the study, Timothy E. Hullar, professor of otolaryngology at the School of Medicine, said this wasn’t merely because of improved balance. It’s also because seniors with poor hearing are more alert when wearing hearing aids.
Hullar said that sound information gave these seniors an auditory reference point that helped them maintain balance. He compared this to how we sway more when we turn out the lights. Similarly, opening your ears (even if you need to use hearing aids to do so) provides you with information regarding your balance.
What Seniors and Caregivers Should Know
Hearing plays an essential role in fall prevention. Since such falls are a major issue (many results in fatalities because of broken hips), preventing them from happening is essential. This information is something you should consider sharing with loved ones who refuse to wear hearing aids. Doing so may help them realize how important it is to wear them. What it all boils down to is safety and an enhanced quality of life.
Schedule a Hearing Exam Today
Getting a hearing test from Countryside Hearing Aid Services in Pinellas County isn’t something you want to put off until later. We understand what an important role good hearing plays in fall prevention.
Throughout the time we’ve been in business, we’ve had many customers come to us with such low expectations regarding hearing aids. Many of these clients said that they were afraid to try them. We’ve worked with them to show them that today’s devices are very different from the traditional type. Once they were willing to give them a try, they realized how much better their life was now that they could hear everything in the environment around them. Contact us today so we can help you improve your life too.
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