Prevent Falls and Foot Injuries by Watching Your Step.
Do you remember the nursery rhyme “Ring Around the Rosie”? It ended with “… and we all fall down!” with everyone gathered around the circle falling to the ground. For the most part, you do not fall down intentionally, but you have probably taken a spill once or twice on accident. Unfortunately, falling down and injuring one or both feet can and does happen. Dr. Harvey Danciger is passionate about educating current and future patients about fall prevention. He sees many individuals at his Palm Desert, CA podiatric office, who have taken a fall and resulted in foot pain or foot injury.
How Does Falling Effect Your Chances for Foot Injuries?
The risk of falling can increase your chances for developing a serious injury to your body - especially your feet. Injury because of a fall can involve back, hip, leg or ankle damage. A fall can cause twisted ankles, sprains and multiple injuries to the foot and ankle. Falling can leave you with a long recovery time, immobilization, therapy and potential surgery.
It is important to use caution while walking inside and outside. Pay attention to your surroundings; you can never be too safe when it comes to the health of your feet and ankles.
Dr. Danciger suggests the following tips to help prevent falls or trips.
1. Consult with your Doctor. Certain health conditions may put you at a greater risk for falling. The same can be applied with certain medications you are taking. Some medications make you dizzy or sleepy, which can increase your likelihood to take a fall. If you are feeling off kilter, you should have a conversation with your doctor regarding your medication.
2. Stay Active. Physical activity on a regular basis can help improve your strength, balance and stability. Staying active will decrease your chances of falling. Simple exercises such as walking or stretching will help with coordination and flexibility.
3. Footwear is Important. Wearing footwear such as slippers, flip-flops and high heels decrease ones stability. Instead, choose a pair of shoes that fit to the size and shape of your feet. Nonskid soles, lace up shoes and avoiding extra thick soles are design characteristics you should look for when purchasing footwear. Invest in a sturdy pair of shoes, which will help prevent falling.
4. Remove Hazards from your home. Put away loose objects in your path of travel. Inspect your home for any items that can cause you to trip or lose your balance. Items such as loose papers, cords, shoes or rugs can all pose tripping hazards.
5. Brighten up your home. Use lamps, night-lights or overhead lighting to help brighten areas that are dimly lit. This will help prevent tripping or falling over objects due to poor lighting.
6. Further fall-proof your home. If you have an unsteady gait, it may be helpful to use a walker, crutches or other assistive devices. Other ideas to help fall proof your home include hand rails, grab bars for your shower or bathtub and nonslip treads for wood steps.
For more information about managing foot health, request a copy of an audio interview on CD titled Dr. Harvey Danciger Discusses Foot Health. Dr. Danciger wants you armed with information so you can go about your day pain free. If you have further concerns about fall prevention, or are suffering the aftermath of a recent tumble, contact our Palm Desert office today at (760) 568-0108 for an appointment!