Napa Senior Living: Senior Safety Gets a Boost with These Simple Exercises
The CDC reports that as many as one-third of all seniors fall each year, and surprisingly, less than half of those seniors talk to their doctors about it. When a senior experiences a fall, even if it does not cause serious injury, she can develop a heightened fear of falling, which may result in limited activities, reduced mobility, loss of physical fitness, and in turn, an increased risk of falling again.
In our last blog post, we discussed some home modifications you can make to improve senior safety and reduce the risk of falls. In addition, there are a number of exercises that seniors can do on a regular basis to increase muscle strength and improve balance, which will not only help reduce the risk of falls, but also provide the senior with more confidence and overall improved health. Check with the senior’s physician first, and then try the following exercises recommended by the Napa senior living professionals at Hired Hands Homecare:
Knee Lifts: Lift the knee as high as your hip if possible, using a sturdy object to help with maintaining balance. As the senior grows stronger, she can decrease the tendency to lean on a support, and attempt holding the leg up for 3 seconds or more.
Point and Flex: While sitting, have the senior point her toes and then flex them, and then repeat with both feet.
Toe Tapping: From a seated position, ask the senior to tap her toes; repeat with both feet.
Sit-to-Stand: When needed, the senior should use a chair for support when standing and again when returning to a sitting position. She can then try to gradually decrease use of her arms as her legs are strengthened.
Calf Muscle Strengthener: While holding onto a wall, chair or the kitchen sink, have the senior repeatedly raise herself up and down on tiptoes. As her strength increases, she can try to go higher up on her toes and eventually try it on one foot at a time.
Shin Muscle Strengthener: Have the senior lean her back against a wall with heels placed seven to eight inches from the wall. Then ask her to lift the toes of both of feet off the ground as high as possible.
One-legged Stand: Holding onto a secure object, have the senior lift one leg off the ground and try to maintain balance on her standing leg.
A fall in the home can be a life-altering event for an older individual. Find out more about how to help an older loved one decrease his or her fall risk and improve senior safety by contacting the Napa senior living experts at Hired Hands Homecare.