PREVENT FALLS AND GET BACK IN BALANCE

September is Fall Prevention Month

 

More than 25% of people aged 65 years and older will fall each year. Falls are the most common cause of both traumatic brain injury and fractures in older adults and are the leading cause of unintentional death for this population.  In older adults, accidental falls are associated with low physical functioning, reduced postural and gait stability, slow righting and equilibrium responses and orthostatic hypotension (low blood pressure).

 

A fall can be defined as an event that results in a person coming to rest inadvertently on the ground or floor or other lower level.  People often deny falling. 

 

The common causes of falls are vision and hearing changes, dizziness, lower-extremity muscle weakness, loss of flexibility, pain, functional deficits in proprioception (sensory changes), balance, and walking. Comorbidities such as vestibular disorders, stroke, head injury, peripheral neuropathy, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple sclerosis or dementia can lead to falls. Musculoskeletal disorders such as low back and neck pain and Cardiovascular conditions can lead to a fall.

 

Physical therapists play a vital role in all stages of fall prevention management by addressing strength, flexibility, endurance, balance and ambulation concerns.  As part of a health team, Physical therapists address negative effects of polypharmacy, incontinence and urgency (bowel and bladder), frailty, and the safety in home and community environments. 

 

The key is prevention. Are you concerned about falling or someone you know who has fallen?  Call today for a Discovery Visit with Dr. Ann H. Newstead, PT, DPT, PhD at 210-833-8336

February is Heart Month

Wear RED is Sunday, February 3rd – GO RED FOR WOMEN DAY!

AHNew Year – AHNew YOU! February is heart month and your heart is a muscle so let’s get moving!

WEAR RED is Sunday, February 3rd – it’s “Go Red For Women” Day!

Movement is golden for many reasons… Movement keeps our hearts healthy! Movement allows us to have energy to do the activities that we enjoy doing…such as walking, hiking, biking, dancing, golfing, and playing with our loved ones.

Below are some healthy heart tips for starting and sticking with a physical activity program:

1) Find an activity you enjoy! Do you prefer walking or running? Being indoors or outdoors?

2) Ask a friend or family member to join you. Another person or a group keeps you accountable!

3) Identify the best time of day to work out. Are you a morning or afternoon or evening person? When is your energy the best?

4) Start easy and gradually increase your intensity and duration. How much activity is good for you? You should be able to talk and perform your activity with moderate effort.

5) Warm up and cool down to prepare your muscles for activity – don’t stretch “cold” muscles – five to 10 minutes is about right. You may feel a little soreness the next day or two – termed delayed muscle onset of soreness.

6) Perform Strength training 2-3 times a week and Flexibility and Balance training most days of the week.

7) Last but not least Aerobics is essential for Heart Health – meaning every step counts. Cumulative activity throughout the day is acceptable! Walking, cycling, swimming, dancing. It’s heart month so pay attention to your heart muscle – do something for your heart health daily! You should be able to walk and talk ~ get your heart rate up to about 50-90% of your maximum heart rate. Read on…

How do I calculate training heart rate? [Click here] Start easy, gradually increase your activities day by day and week by week.

cumulative amount of moderate physical activity of 30 to 60 minutes throughout the day adds up fast. Moderate activity level where you can walk and talk while moving can keep you heart healthy. 

Wishing you much happiness and heart health for “AH New You”!

If you or a loved one would like more information contact Dr. Ann H. Newstead, PT, DPT, PhD for a free 30-minute Discovery Consultation Visit at 210-833-8336. 

Best heart health always, xo

Ann