Picture a supermodel in her heels walking heel to toe with long stride. Now try it. Do you feel unsteady? When your feet are that close together, or even nearly crossing, it is easy to fall. Your center of gravity is very high. The bulk of the weight is up high with a narrow base.
Now think of a Weeble – remember those toys with the rounded bottom wider than the top? They have a very low center of gravity (most of the weight in the bottom). They can tip over on their side and still return to standing.
If you’re ever feeling unsteady when walking, think about your center of gravity. Stand and walk with your feet farther apart. Take shorter steps. Lift your feet to avoid catching on grass, rocks, and other low obstacles.
When someone has fallen or is afraid of falling, you can notice these changes. As we become fearful we widen our stance, bend a little, and shuffle.
- Arthritis in hips, knees, ankles, and feet can increase falls risk.
- Dizziness, inner ear problems, or medications that make us dizzy can increase risk of falls.
- Lack of sleep, getting up at night without light, and medications that make us sleepy can increase risk of falls.
- Not drinking enough, especially during these hot summer months, can lead to dehydration making us dizzy.
- Medicines that lower blood pressure can make us feel dizzy when we first stand up or turn.
- Pets under our feet can be a source of tripping. So can throw rugs.
There are steps you can take to decrease your risk of falls. Many of the things listed above can be minimized or removed as risks.
See a home falls prevention checklist under Resources at www.medsmash.com.
Call today for a thorough falls risk assessment. Take action now to prevent falls!
Click here to connect to my personal blog for application. – Michelle Fritsch