Many people know an older person who fell, went to a hospital or nursing home, and never made it home again. Or perhaps the person did recover sufficiently to go home, but was confined to a wheelchair. About one out of three seniors over age 65 will fall at least once this year.
Why do Older People Fall?
According to the National Institute on Aging, there are many factors that cause older people to have such serious falls, but muscle weakness in the legs is one of the most important reasons. Those who exercise regularly, maintaining endurance and flexibility as well as muscle strength, fall less often, but aging takes a toll on everyone.
Bones become less dense, joints are damaged by arthritis, blood pressure problems can cause dizziness and the muscles weaken. Posture and gait change and the end result is a loss of confidence. The fear of falling makes someone afraid to walk, so they spend much of their time sitting. This results in further weakness, a vicious cycle that will probably, at some point, result in the fall that has been feared for so long.
Depression sets in, a common problem among the elderly and linked to poor nutrition. An elderly person living alone may be surviving on frozen dinners, cereal and ice cream.
Problems with the feet afflict many of the elderly. If they are diabetic, they may have developed neuropathy in their hands and feet. This causes numbness in many people, making it necessary to watch where they are putting their feet. Many seniors have poor balance even without neuropathy in their feet; this compounds the problem. Click here for more details about the physical therapy in Topeka, KS.
Physical Therapy Can Break the Cycle of Weakness
Physical Therapy Topeka KS can help an older person to become stronger and more flexible. As they learn how to exercise and increase strength without injury, they gain self-confidence. After a hospitalization or an injury, physical therapy is particularly helpful. However, the most benefit may be to the person who is able to become more active and less depressed. That vicious cycle of weakness can be broken, greatly improving someone’s quality of life.
The Center For Manual Medicine focuses on improving the lives of their patients by treating musculo-skeletal pain with non-surgical treatments. Physical Therapy Topeka KS helps to lessen the risks of falls and fractures in the elderly by increasing their confidence, balance, strength and the joy of living.
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