Learning to Balance May Help Prevent Falls in Seniors

October 18, 2023

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When your loved one is aging in place, one of the most important things they can focus on is balance and strength. Both are great ways to ensure your senior is limiting the risk of falling and gaining more independence by increasing mobility. Here is everything you need to know about what causes balance issues in the elderly and how your loved one can start improving their balance.

What Happens To Balance As You Get Older

Balance tends to decline as a person ages due to various factors. Seniors may face changes in the vestibular system, which controls balance, which can occur with age, leading to dizziness or unsteadiness. Secondly, it is important to note that a senior may face decreased muscle mass and strength and reduced joint flexibility, which can affect stability and coordination. Another thing to consider is age-related conditions like osteoarthritis, and neurological changes can further compromise balance, increasing the risk of falls and injuries in seniors. These are examples of why your senior may have poor balance and not the balance they used to have. Below are some tips that can help your senior focus on balancing work but also remain independent for as long as possible.

Hire In-Home Care

Although this may not be the tip you expected, your senior may still struggle to do everyday things even with good balance. Your senior can hire in-home care to help them where it's necessary especially if they want to age in place for as long as possible. In-home care can also help keep an eye on your loved one, remove tripping hazards, and call for medical help when necessary. Even having someone in your senior's home part-time can make a huge difference in their quality of life.

Encourage Physical Therapy

As your loved one ages, things do change a lot. They may get hip replacements, be recovering from falls, have back pain, or be on medications to manage chronic illnesses. Whatever it is, it can all impact balance and strength. Although a senior can do home workouts, which is good to do, they may need a professional to help them learn what their body can and can't do. Once your senior understands the exercises they should be doing, they can go home and practice to help build strength and balance. A physical therapist may even have in-home care help with some of these exercises and train them on what to do for a senior.

Practice Yoga

Yoga can be highly beneficial for seniors in improving balance, strength and reducing the risk of falling through several mechanisms. Yoga poses often emphasize body awareness and alignment, enhancing a senior's proprioception and improving balance. Secondly, holding poses and transitioning between them can enhance muscle strength and endurance, particularly in the legs and core, which are crucial for stability. The main focus of yoga is on deep breathing, and relaxation can help reduce anxiety, which can contribute to better overall balance and coordination. Regular yoga can increase flexibility and joint mobility, reducing the likelihood of stiffness or joint-related balance issues often associated with aging.

If you or your loved one is looking for In-Home Care or Placement Services in Atherton, CA, please call Familiar Surroundings Home Care.

Santa Clara County: (408) 979-9990 

San Mateo County: (650) 353-9777

Santa Cruz County: (831) 480-3990



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