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Ask a Doc: Now that I am older, are there things I can do to prevent myself from falling?

AAD DickeyOur answer comes from Dr. Jefferson Dickey, Chicopee Medical Center.

Question: Now that I am older, are there things I can do to prevent myself from falling?

Answer:  Fall prevention may not seem like a lively topic, but it's important. As you get older, physical changes and health conditions and sometimes the medications used to treat those conditions, make falls more likely. In fact, falls are a leading cause of injury among older adults. Still, fear of falling doesn't need to rule your life. Instead, consider some of the following simple fall-prevention strategies.

Begin your fall-prevention plan by making an appointment with your doctor to discuss what medications you are taking, if you’ve fallen before and if you have any health conditions that might cause a fall. Next keep moving and wear sensible shoes. If approved by your doctor, physical activity can go a long way toward fall prevention. Take a walk around your house and make sure it is well lighted and remove any hazards that might create a fall risk. Ask your doctor if an assistive device such as a cane or walker would be appropriate for you. And lastly, don’t forget to have regular eye check-ups to make sure your vision is the best it can be.

Dr. Jefferson Dickey is a primary care doctor located in our Chicopee Medical Center. If you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Dickey, call the office at (413) 552-3250.

‘Ask a Doc’ is a weekly post by Holyoke Medical Center. To ask a question, please feel free to submit to webadministrator@holyokehealth.com and we will do our best to answer it.