As we get older, many factors increase the risk of falling including weakening of muscles, vision problems, peripheral nerve damage from diabetes, and poorly fitting shoes. Wearing properly-fitted shoes with custom orthotics can greatly improve balance. Certain medications can also impair balance and not getting enough minerals can interfere with proper muscle functioning. Some simple changes around the house can eliminate tripping hazards. Seeing your foot doctor regularly can help you keep your feet strong and stable.
6 tips to help reduce the risk of falling include the following:
- Remove small rugs—Small area rugs can be treacherous. You can easily slip and lose your balance, so throw out the throw rugs.
- Install grab bars in the bathroom—Have heavy grab bars installed in the shower and tub areas. Slip and fall injuries often happen in the bathroom, so this improvement is very important.
- Improve foot and ankle strength—Improve ankle stability with strength and flexibility exercises. These exercises will also improve your balance and help prevent falls.
- Properly secure handrails on stairs—Well-lit staircases and walkways are essential. Make sure handrails are properly secured.
- Reroute extension cords—Move wires out of the way of any walking areas.
- Have regular eye exams—Another major contributor to falls is having poor vision. Have your eyes checked regularly and get new glasses as needed.
If you have injured your foot in a fall, see your foot doctor for the best care. The foot specialists at ETL Podiatry in Briarwood and Melville, NY, have unparalleled experience in treating all aspects of foot and ankle problems. Our team of doctors that includes Geoffrey C. Epstein, DPM, Matthew J. Tavroff, DPM, Stuart B. Leon, DPM and Robert J. Leon, DPM is dedicated to serving you with all of the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Melville, NY (631)-549-8637 and Briarwood, NY (718)-657-8921.