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Balance and Fall Prevention: Environmental Factors

Okay, last one is environmental risk factor…and on this one, I want you guys to pay attention because this one what you can put into effect today.  You can go home to your apartment look around your apartment and make some changes to reduce your risk for having a fall.

There are things in our own environment that can put us in a higher risk for having a fall. Something that you can do is clear clutter around your apartment. So, a lot of the apartments that I go to here have coffee tables with maybe a basket next to it and then a waste paper basket on the other side and they must squeeze by with or without their walker just to be able to get though.

Clearing some space, even getting rid of coffee tables can help. It can allow us to get by especially with our walker to get to our couch or chair without having things that we can trip on.

Poor lightning is another big problem. Who in the middle of the night on a regular basis must get up and go to the bathroom? Okay most everyone.

So, it’s a matter of the fact that we just have to deal with it. How many times you get up in the middle of the night and you feel like a spring chicken and your just ready to go.

No, you wake up, you’re drowsy, it’s dark, you like, “Ohhhh, I really have to go to bathroom but I don’t want to get up” and you wonder into the bathroom but you don’t turn the light on first.

Vision has a big input on how to balance. When you don’t have light, your vision can’t help as much. So, things like night lights are very important… or get one of those lamps that turn on with just touch.  You won’t have to search for the little twisty thing when you all tired and trying to figure out how many clicks do I need to get those lights turn on. You just touch the light and it turns on.

One of the best things that I have seen was from a past patient of mine. She has lights that go along the bottom end up her bed. And when her feat hit the ground, it triggers a little motion sensor and lights the ground in front of her…

…No thought process. Takes the stubbornness out of it.

You can get one that as soon as your feet hit the ground. Boom. Lights up in front of you as soon as you walk into the bathroom. Boom, the lights turn on.

I understand some of you have budget constraints but when we are deciding on if that’s worth it or not…. You also have to think would I like to be in rehab for 3 weeks and would I like to have a painful rehab after a hip fracture or would I like to spend 29.99 at home depot for a motion light?

I like the idea of taking the human element out of it because when I’m tired in the middle of the night, I want to think about fall prevention or what I have to do. When my feet hit the ground, the lights turn on.

Or I have just those little plug-in ones that plug-in to the outlets. They provide a lower level light. That’s better than nothing.

What I hear a lot is, I don’t want to wake up my significant other!

Well a big thud of your head on the toilet is going to wake up your significant other. And they are going to be up all night while the EMS is coming. So, I think they’ll learn to roll over and put pillow over their head. It’s just part of being safe.

If you would like more info on balance and fall prevention check out our free report “7 Ways to Improve Your Balance and Prevent Another Fall

We are here to help people stay healthy, active and independent… without surgery or pain pills… even if you’ve been told you’re just getting old!

Ryan e1657920030149

Dr. Ryan Seifert

Natural Fit Physical Therapy

"We Help Adults 50+ Become More Active, Stay Healthy, And Avoid Slowing Down Without Pain Pills, Injections, Or Surgery."



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