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How Chiropractic Can Help Seniors Avoid Falls

The latest research with chiropractic and its effect on preventing falls in the elderly is a topic that is not well published. In the latest studies, approximately 30-40% of older adults who still live at home have at least one fall a year. This number increases with age.

How Chiropractic Can Help

Older gentleman sitting at tableWe now are getting an understanding of how chiropractic can impact the brain’s ability to know where the arms and legs are without looking at them and how our brain controls the muscles of the body.

The brain is also crucial for maintaining balance and preventing falls. According to research taken from “The Reality Check” by Dr. Heidi Haavik, the following was noted in a study: After 12 weeks of care, there was a significant improvement in ankle joint position sense. This research stated the study group shows the patients’ brains were more aware of where their ankles were without having to look at them.

The adjustments also helped with step reaction time, the ability to take a quick step to recover when sensing you might be falling. Most patients reported a better quality of life after the study. What we can take out of this is that chiropractic care can help reduce the number of falls in older adults.

Other Tips for Reducing Falls

In addition to chiropractic care, here are some tips to help prevent falls:

Wear sensible shoes – Avoid wearing shoes such as high heels, floppy slippers or shoes with slick soles that can make it easy to slip and fall. Instead, wear sturdy shoes that fit your feet well and that have nonskid soles.

Remove slipping hazards  – Look around your living space and secure any loose rugs with slip-resistant backing. Or, simply remove loose rugs from your home. Also move any tables, magazine racks, plant stands or other obstacles from high-traffic areas.

Brighten your home – Keeping your residence well-lit can go a long way toward preventing falls. Put night lights in your bedroom, bathrooms and hallways. Place a lamp within easy reach of your bed in case you need to get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. If you need to go up or downstairs, turn on the lights first.

Use assisted devices – To help you keep steady when you’re standing, your doctor might recommend that you use a cane or walker. Here are some other accessories that you may want to consider:

  • Stairway handrails
  • Nonslip treads for hardwood steps
  • An elevated toilet seat or one with armrests
  • Grab bars for the shower or tub
  • A durable plastic seat for the shower or bathtub and a handheld shower nozzle for bathing in a seated position

For more information or to book an appointment, contact us today.
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