Fall Prevention with Exercise

With age, the likelihood of falls increases. More than one third of adults age 65 and older in the US fall at least once each year. Injuries from falls can be devastating. More than 90% of hip fractures are caused by a fall to the side onto the hip. Falls can be deadly, too. Statistics show death rates dramatically increase in those age 80 and older.

Fall Prevention

If you or a loved one has had a fall already, have balance or walking problems, you need to take action to prevent another fall. The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends exercise or physical therapy and taking vitamin D supplements to prevent falls for older adults at risk for falling because of a recent fall or difficulty walking.

Effective exercise and physical therapy include group classes and at-home physiotherapy strategies. Balance training 3 or more days per week is also recommended.

According to the Institute of Medicine, 600 IU of vitamin D is the recommended daily allowance for adults aged 51 to 70 years and 800 IU for adults older than

70 years. However, your doctor may recommend more if your vitamin D level is low.

Although falls are called “accidents,” the injuries older people sustain in falls are usually predictable and preventable. Focus on not being surprised by decreasing your risks for falls.