Every September on the first day of fall, the Falls Free® Initiative promotes National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. According to the National Council on Aging, falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older Americans. Falls threaten seniors’ safety and independence, and generate enormous economic and personal costs. However, falling is not an inevitable result of aging. Here’s some steps you can do to take control of your health:
Find a good balance and exercise program. Look to build balance, strength, and flexibility. Contact Pima Council on Aging for referrals. Find a program you like and take a friend.
Talk to your health care provider. Ask for an assessment of your risk of falling. Share your history of recent falls.
Regularly review your medications with your doctor and pharmacist. Make sure side effects aren’t increasing your risk of falling. Take medications only as prescribed.
Get your vision and hearing checked annually and update your eyeglasses. Your eyes and ears are key to keeping you on your feet.
Keep your home safe. Remove tripping hazards, increase lighting, make stairs safe, and install grab bars in key areas.
Talk to your family members. Enlist their support in taking simple steps to stay safe. Falls are not just a seniors’ issue.
If fall prevention isn’t something that you’re thinking about now, I promise there is someone in your life who’s worried about it. This kind of education can change a community, and that’s why we’re proud to support NCOA’s Falls Prevention Awareness Day efforts as part of our year-round commitment to supporting older adults in the Drexel Heights area.
The Drexel Heights Fire District Board meets on the third Friday of each month at 9:00 a.m. in the training classroom next to Station # 1, located at 5030 S. Camino Verde. All meetings are handicap accessible and with 10 days written notice, arrangements can be made for the hearing impaired.