9 Commonly Overlooked Fall Risks
At any age, falling can lead to injury, sometimes severe. We all know environmental risks for falls — ice in the winter, slippery rain surfaces and strong winds. But there are risks in your own home that you may be overlooking.
The following tips can help you stay upright and avoid costly and painful trips to the hospital:
1. Be careful around pets that can get underfoot and cause tripping.
Exercise caution when bending down to serve food, as pets can become excited and accidentally knock you over. Keep toys in a basket when your pet is not playing with them so you don’t trip on them. If your dog has a tendency to bolt on walks, evaluate whether or not you can handle their sudden strength.
2. Avoid highly waxed/shiny flooring.
Waxed floors can be slippery, and shiny floors can play tricks on the eyes.
3. Know how a new medication or medication change might affect balance or cause dizziness.
Ask your physician if dizziness is a side effect of any new medications or combinations of medications. Dizziness increases risk for falls and makes other tasks like driving more dangerous as well. If the prescription is necessary and dizziness may affect you, ask your doctor to recommend fall prevention strategies or ways to counteract your side effects.
4. Avoid placing frequently used items in low drawer storage.
Bending over (or getting on a stepladder) can be dangerous. It’s best to put the things you use frequently in a drawer or cabinet at a level that doesn’t require you to move up or down regularly.
5. Sit on a firm chair instead of sitting on the edge of the bed to get dressed or put on shoes.
It might be tempting to sit on the edge of your bed, but beds on wheels can slip and most mattresses do not provide a stiff enough surface for optimal balance.
6. Change positions slowly.
Rising too quickly can lead to a feeling of faintness due to blood pressure change, so get up gradually to stay clearheaded and balanced.
7. Reach back to make sure your chair is close to you before sitting.
It’s important to make sure that any edge you’re about to sit on is close behind you. Don’t rely on your memory or spatial judgment. Make it a habit to reach behind yourself.
8. Create a flow in your furniture so you do not have to navigate around tables and cords.
When you have to turn sideways to get around at home, especially in a hurry or in the dark, it is easy to accidentally trip and fall. It’s also easy to forget to step over the cord to the TV unless it is secured against a wall. Make sure your furniture is situated to give you enough space to easy navigate at any time during the day.
9. Discuss fear of falling with your physician and/or therapist.
Fear of falling is a fall risk itself because fear may cause an individual to withdraw due to anxiety or not participate in important physical activities. A clinician can help manage concerns so that an individual can reduce their worry and participate in activities that improve balance.
For original post at a Place for Mom:
9 Enjoyable Activities for Seniors with Limited Mobility
Seniors with limited mobility can still enjoy a variety of activities
Many older adults lose mobility due to conditions like stroke, severe arthritis, or injuries from falls. When that happens, activities and hobbies they used to enjoy might now be too difficult.
But loss of mobility doesn’t mean the end of good times. There are many ways to have fun without needing to move around too much.
We rounded up 9 wonderful activities for seniors with limited mobility. You’re sure to find something that suits your older adult as well as things that can be done together with other people.
9 great activities for seniors with limited mobility
1. Spend time reading
Reading is a fantastic activity for older adults. It’s a fun way to spend time and keep the brain engaged. It can also improve memory, reduce stress, improve sleep, and delay cognitive decline.
Whether your older adult likes reading physical books, magazines, using an e-reader, or listening to audiobooks, they can immerse themselves in a well-told story, look at photographs, or learn about an interesting new topic.
Organizing a book club among their friends is another way for seniors to enjoy reading and socializing.
2. Explore a variety of hobbies
Hobbies are great for older adults with limited mobility. Activities that don’t require a lot of moving around include cooking, baking, birdwatching, knitting, crochet, indoor or container gardening, playing a musical instrument, or practicing languages.
This is also a perfect time to learn something new – maybe there are hobbies or interests they’ve never had a chance to explore before. Learning is also a great way to stay sharp and keep boredom at bay.
3. Exercise regularly
Even if your older adult isn’t very mobile, there may still be exercises they can do to get their bodies moving. Whether they’re sitting or standing, they can still get the health and mood benefits, especially from chair exercises or chair yoga routines.
There are also exercise routines that can be done using a walker for stability or just focused on the feet and ankles to reduce swelling.
4. Get creative
Getting in touch with their creative side is another fun way for seniors to spend time.
Drawing, coloring, painting, and sculpture are all wonderful ways to be creative. Fun projects might include creating scrapbooks, organizing family photo albums, or making a family recipe book.
As a plus, being creative also comes with health benefits. Research has found creative activities can help people who are battling chronic illness to decrease negative emotions and increase positive ones, reduce stress and anxiety, and improve medical outcomes.
5. Spend time outdoors
Getting outside to spend a little time in nature is relaxing and a great mood booster.
Even if their limited mobility means that your older adult can only get to the porch or sit next to a big window, getting some fresh air or viewing the scenery is a great everyday activity.
6. Have fun with happy visitors
Asking family or friends with babies or friendly pets to stop by for a visit is another fantastic way to engage an older adult.
Almost everyone perks up in the presence of young children. And playing with pets is another surefire way to bring cheer and reduce stress.
7. Play games!
Games and puzzles are a fantastic source of fun times. There are so many to choose from and most can be played in groups with visitors, one-on-one for quality time together, and solo.
Try some classic games or card games, jigsaw puzzles, or crossword puzzles.
8. Enjoy movies, TV shows, or music
Watching TV all day isn’t a healthy pastime, but a movie or a couple of TV shows can be an enjoyable part of the day or week.
Watching TV could even intersect with a hobby. For example, your older adult might be interested in watching a documentary on a topic they’re learning about. Or, channels like the Food Network or the Travel Channel could inspire new recipes to try or travel destinations to learn about.
Listening (or singing along!) to music they like is another great activity. Music has the power to reduce stress, anxiety, and pain. It also improves immune function and sleep as well as helping memory.
9. Participate in charitable works
Even if your older adult isn’t very mobile or is homebound, they can still give back to the community. This is a wonderful way to stay engaged and feel a sense of purpose and accomplishment.
Contact local charities, hospitals, or religious organizations to find out if they have any projects your older adult could contribute to. That could mean knitting or crocheting blankets or hats, creating no-sew blankets, or helping to assemble care packages.
For original post at Daily Caring: