Tuesday, September 22, is the first official day of fall, and it’s also National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related emergency room visits, and the day is meant to address this public health issue. Falls can be more dangerous than they might seem. They can cause bruising, hip fractures, and head injuries, and these accidents have the potential to be fatal, especially for the elderly. In honor of Falls Prevention Awareness Day, here are some products offered by APA Medical that work as excellent ways to prevent falls and some fall prevention tips that can keep your loved ones safe and healthy.
In order to come up with ways to prevent falls, it helps to know what some of the most common causes of falls are. Many things, including lower body weakness, difficulties balancing, vision problems, foot pain, use of medicines that affect cognitive abilities, and a vitamin D deficiency are all reasons that people fall. More than 3 million older adults are treated for fall-related injuries each year. Falls are the second leading cause of accidental or unintentional injury deaths worldwide.
Unique Items to Prevent Falls
Some fall prevention items are well-known, others, not so much. Some products are less familiar; however, they can be very beneficial in preventing falls. Take our Handy Bar; for example, it makes it easy to get in and out of your car so that you can have support for stress-free traveling. The HandyBar allows the user to easily sit or stand safely while entering or exiting their vehicle, offering support and protection from falls.
Our safety pole, the Healthcraft SuperPole, is an innovative and adaptable home safety product you can use almost anywhere in the house. Exceptional craftsmanship allows it to fit into any room with its clean design and ease of installation. The Healthcraft Superpole can really deliver a sense of comfort because it allows you to be more independent by providing extra support to help prevent falls from any location in the home.
Additionally, we offer a wide selection of Bed Rails. These are not only for hospitals or nursing homes keeping a person from rolling out of bed. The main function of the bed rails we carry is to allow a person to safely transfer in and out of bed. There are several different styles and designs to fit your needs. From small to large, and even adjustable, we have options to fit almost any need.
Canes and Walkers
For those with mobility issues, canes and walkers are pretty simple ways to prevent falls. When you have mobility issues, falls can come at any time and for no particular reason. Using canes and walkers help the user concentrate more closely on their movements and provide physical support when walking.
Many people who would benefit from using canes and walkers choose not to because they worry that using them makes them look older, which is silly. Falling and hurting yourself makes you look a lot older than using an aid does.
Canes come in all shapes and sizes and are a very helpful way to prevent falls. A standard cane should be used to help with balance and to help you stand more upright when you walk. A pronged or quad cane has more support at the bottom and can help stabilize you more if you need more help when walking, but it still should not be used if you are putting more than about 20% of your body weight on it. If this is the case, you should look into getting a walker or crutches.
When a cane doesn’t provide enough support, a walker is a step up in support and is among the best ways to prevent falls. Walkers are an excellent aid for people with balance issues, people recovering from surgery or an injury, people experience weakness, people with respiratory or heart health issues, and anyone who has problems walking. If a person cannot bear weight on one or both legs due to a surgery or hip replacement but is mobile enough not to require a wheelchair, a walker is generally the right choice. Here are five benefits of using a walker:
- Safer Walks: Having a walker to rely on immediately adds to the safety of your walks. Whether you are walking through your house, around the block, or at the store, you will have more stability and peace of mind in knowing you are taking the right safety precautions.
- Longer Walks: Since walkers reduce weight-bearing, you’ll be able to walk longer distances and for more extended periods. They help you stay active and mobile.
- The Ability to Rest If Needed: We all get tired at some point. Whether you have overextended yourself a little too much or you are just having a low energy day, walkers give you the ability to take a rest if needed.
- Extra Support: Many people use a walker as a precaution. They are the next step up from using a cane. You only use it when you need a little extra support. In this sense, walkers are a great mobility support tool for situations when you know you’ll need it.
- Less Stress on the Body: Overall, the extra support and ability to bear some of your weight places less stress overall on your body. They will help you have more stamina, keep your energy levels up, and allow you to go about your day without overworking your muscles.
A rollator is another way to prevent falls, and because of its wheels and maneuverability, it is best for people who can walk but need a little help with balance and stability. A rollator can conserve the user’s energy because it does not have to be lifted for movement like a non-wheeled walker, allows a faster walking speed, and helps with a normal gait.
It is also essential to understand the patient’s comfort level with their strength, area awareness, and agility when choosing between a walker and a rollator. The more comfortable someone is with themself and their device, the less likely they will experience a fall or injury.
Ways to Prevent Falls In the Bathroom
Did you know that just over 80% of falls inside the home occur in the bathroom? For people with mobility issues, the bathroom can be a tricky place. The shower, sink, and toilet all use water and can become slippery with use.
APA Medical has a full line of bathroom products that help prevent falls and accidents, including bath benches, grab bars, bathing aids, and transfer benches.
National Falls Prevention Awareness Day
September 22nd will be the 11th annual National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related emergency department visits for older adults, the primary cause of hip fractures, and more than half of fatal head injuries.
If someone in your life has mobility issues, please do all you can to take fall prevention measures. APA Medical carries a wide array of products that are excellent ways to prevent falls.