Fall Prevention and Mobility Assist

Falls are the leading cause of injuries among seniors.  These injuries often lead to hospitalization, followed by rehabilitation, and in the worst case can lead to a wheelchair. Yet at the same time, mobility is an important part of life, a cornerstone of independence. Ironically, seniors living at home who have experienced a fall or are concerned they are at risk will often withdraw from activities, choosing to remain seated and immobile. With a lack of exercise and activity, this can lead to muscle atrophy and further weakness and loss of balance actually increasing risk of falls.

At Broad Street, our Care Professionals encourage mobility but using techniques that are safe. With greater exercise leading to greater strength and balance, not only can our senior home care clients remain physically active, but it promotes an overall healthier lifestyle and greater engagement. In effect, with some mobility assistance and support by Broad Street Home Care, our senior clients can remain in their homes for longer and experience a greater level of independence.

How to Prevent Falls and How Home Care can help

The first step in avoiding falls is to assess what risk factors you may be exposed to both to create awareness and potentially take corrective measures.  Some of these warning signs include the following:

  • Have you fallen before – Not surprisingly, this is the biggest risk factor.  But it is not just about whether you have fallen but may include whether you almost fell and what you did to prevent it.  Did you fall backwards or forwards, or to the side? Were you caught by someone, or did you manage to grab onto something?  These are all factors to be discussed in order to determine the best strategy to avoid falls.
  • What medications are you taking – Different medications can have a significant impact on balance, causing dizziness or changes in blood pressure including orthostatic hypertension.  It is important to be aware of these medications and their potential impacts, particularly when going from a seated position to standing.
  • Fall hazards in the home – Loose rugs, uneven flooring, electrical cords and even spills can all create fall risk.  It is important to keep a clean, well-lit and even walking environment to avoid trip hazards.  It may also make sense to install rails particularly in critical areas where falls can be more common, like showers and bathrooms.

How Broad Street Home Care can help prevent falls

Home care assessment – The first step in preventing falls is to assess the situation.  Our nurse supervisors can help by getting a better understanding of the following to determine the risk of falls and what action to consider:

  • Underlying health conditions
  • List of medications and when they are taken during the day
  • History of falls, and any associated injuries
  • Household environment and any hazards
  • Understanding your daily routine and how you want to live

Plan of Service – After conducting an assessment in the home, the nurse supervisor can then develop a plan, which could be in coordination with your physician and any other health specialist.  This plan would take any of the following into account:

  • Instruction for a Home Care Professional on the best way to support your daily routine and your continued mobility while also reducing the risk of falls
  • Timing of medication and necessary precaution
  • Maintaining a clean household and removing any trip hazards, along with potential home modification to make the home more accessible
  • Daily exercise routine to improve strength and balance
  • Understanding your daily routine and how you want to live

How We Teach Fall Prevention and Mobility Assistance

There are a number of techniques that personal assistance providing home care can utilize.  What is most important is first understanding the level of mobility and then making sure that, if necessary, the seniors and their personal assistants are using the proper equipment.  It is about treating seniors with respect and dignity, to provide the support needed, but not in an overbearing way.  Some of these techniques and related equipment include:

  • Stand by assist – Walking next to the client and providing support when needed
  • Contact assist – Maintaining contact with the client in order to sense shifts in weight and balance
  • Gait Belt – a specially designed belt used to help in transferring the client from a seated position
  • Hoyer Lift or Sara Lift – An assistive device used to help transfer senior clients through electric or hydraulic power

How does Fall Prevention and Mobility Assistance fit into our Home Care Service

Broad Street focuses on customized home care support designed for our senior client’s unique needs.  With the prevalence of falls among seniors, it is often an area of focus when developing our plan of service.  With safety and security providing the foundation, Broad Street personal assistants can support our senior clients in continuing to live independently in their homes.  Furthermore, if there has been fall resulting in a hospitalization, Broad Street personalized home care can support seniors returning to home through continued rehabilitation and a return to independence.

Call us to discuss alternatives and to schedule an assessment

If you or a family member has suffered a fall or is struggling with the limitations in mobility, it’s time to arrange for the support you need. Broad Street Home Care offers a wide range of services from personal care and companionship including Fall Prevention and Mobility Assist.

Call us today at (847)-728-0134 to start the process and let us arrange the services most appropriate to you.