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Prevention of Falls News

Health Tip: Stair Safety For Older People

Posted 20 hours ago by Drugs.com

-- Some elderly people are at heightened risk for falling, especially at home. Six of 10 falls occur within the home – often due to lax stair safety, the National Institute on Aging says. The agency offers these safety suggestions: Install tightly-fastened handrails on both sides of the stairs. Always hold the handrails while going up and down stairs. If you need to carry something while using the stairs, hold tightly with one hand, and do not block your view with the item in your hands. Install bright lighting, including switches at both the top and bottom of stairs. Do not stack items on stairs. Install a runner or carpet on stairs, or use no-slip strips. Read more

Related support groups: Fracture, bone, Prevention of Falls, Prevention of Fractures

Young Adults May Be Ignoring High Blood Pressure

Posted 28 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 28, 2017 – High blood pressure doesn't seem to be as much of a concern for young American adults as it is for their 40 and older counterparts, a new study finds. And, that seems to be especially true for young adult men, the study authors said. "While hypertension awareness, treatment and control have improved overall since the early 2000s, all three remain worse in young adults – those aged 18-39," said senior study author Dr. Andrew Moran. An assistant professor at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City, he made his comments in a news release from the American Heart Association. The heart association defines high blood pressure as 140/90 or higher. High blood pressure can lead to heart attack and stroke. The study included information from eight surveys completed sometime between 1999-2014. More than 41,000 Americans participated in the surveys. They ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Obesity, Hypertension, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Thromboembolic Stroke Prophylaxis, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Prevention of Falls

More Than Half of Americans Will Need Nursing Home Care: Study

Posted 28 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 28, 2017 – More than half of Americans will find themselves in a nursing home at some point in their lives, a new study shows. That eclipses the 35 percent estimate used by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the researchers added. "Lifetime use of nursing homes is considerably greater than previously thought, mostly due to an increase in short stays of less than three weeks," said lead researcher Michael Hurd. He is director of the RAND Center for the Study of Aging, in Santa Monica, Calif. Increased nursing home care begs the question of who will pay for it and how will they pay for it, he said. "Out-of-pocket spending is not particularly large, on average, but the risk of long stays and of correspondingly large out-of-pocket spending is fairly large – 5 percent of patients will spend more than 1,500 days in a nursing home, and 5 percent will spend more ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Osteoporosis, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Ischemic Heart Disease, Prevention of Falls

Taking a Stand on Staying Mobile After 80

Posted 14 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 14, 2017 – If you want to stay as fit as possible well into your 80s, the answer may be as simple as standing on your own two feet. New research shows that a standing-exercise program is more effective for older adults than commonly used seated exercises. Among nearly 300 participants who were an average age of 80, those who took part in a standing-exercise program were able to walk faster and farther than those in a seated-exercise program, researchers reported. "Older adults who are interested in improving their mobility should consider participating in a group-based exercise program like 'On the Move,' " said lead researcher Jennifer Brach. "The timing and coordination exercises are designed to be more challenging for participants, but they are important for walking and can improve mobility," she said. Brach is an associate professor in the department of physical ... Read more

Related support groups: Osteoporosis, Fracture, bone, Prevention of Osteoporosis, Prevention of Falls, Prevention of Fractures

The Right Shoes Can Help Prevent Falls

Posted 10 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Falls are the leading cause of death among people 65 and older, government surveys show. More than 2.8 million adults were treated in the emergency room and 27,000 people died from falls in 2014, the most recent year for which statistics are available. Wearing the right shoes can help prevent falls, the American Podiatric Association says, suggesting while shopping for shoes you should: Press on the shoes to make sure the heels won't collapse and the shoes won't twist in the middle. While trying on the shoes, make sure you're wearing the socks you wear most often. Have your feet measured every time you shop for shoes. Even in mature adults, foot sizes can change frequently. Buy the shoes only if they feel comfortable and steady. . Read more

Related support groups: Foot Care, Prevention of Falls

Take the (Exercise) Plunge

Posted 1 Aug 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 1, 2017 – You can do more than just beat the heat the next time you go to the pool. Whether you swim or do aquatic exercises, working out in water improves strength, flexibility and cardiovascular health. Water provides more resistance than air, allowing you to exercise at a higher intensity with less wear and tear on the body and less risk of injury. That's great for people with joint pain. Swimming is a perfect water workout, according to the American Council on Exercise. Doing a half hour of the front crawl at an easy pace can burn about 250 calories, depending on your weight. If you pick up the pace, you can burn about 400 calories in the same amount of time. If you're new to swimming, start with 5- to 10-minute sessions. As you build stamina, add more minutes. Mixing up your strokes can keep your routine from getting boring as well as work different muscles. For ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, Muscle Pain, Frozen Shoulder, Prevention of Falls

Surgeons Warn of Trampolines' Down Side

Posted 30 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, July 29, 2017 – A trampoline may have your kids jumping for joy, but the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons reminds parents of potential dangers. In 2015, more than 295,000 medically treated trampoline injuries occurred in the United States. These included almost 103,000 emergency department visits, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. "We want children to enjoy exercise and physical activity, especially during the summer months, but parents and caregivers should know about the dangers of trampolines and the risk for serious injury, especially in very young children," academy spokeswoman Dr. Jennifer Weiss said in a news release from the surgeons' group. "Children younger than age 6 are less likely to have the coordination, body awareness and swift reaction time necessary to keep their bodies, bones and brains safe on trampolines," said Weiss, a Los ... Read more

Related support groups: Head Injury, Fracture, bone, Compression Fracture of Vertebral Column, Prevention of Falls, Head Injury w/ Intracranial Hemorrhage and Loss of Consciousness, Head Injury with Loss of Consciousness, Prevention of Fractures

'Smart' Robot Technology Could Give Stroke Rehab a Boost

Posted 19 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 19, 2017 – Scientists say they have developed a "smart" robotic harness that might make it easier for people to learn to walk again after a stroke or spinal cord injury. The harness, the researchers said, can be fine-tuned to individual patients to help them find a more natural walking pattern as they go through rehabilitation. In early tests with 26 patients recovering from a spinal cord injury or stroke, the technology looked promising, according to a new report. In general, the study found, the system allowed patients to move with a more natural gait, and better balance and coordination. The researchers also saw immediate effects among five spinal cord injury patients. Right after an hour of training with the harness, the patients were able to move more easily using their usual assist devices, such as crutches or a walker. Right now, rehab is often done the ... Read more

Related support groups: Ischemic Stroke, Transient Ischemic Attack, Intracranial Hemorrhage, Prevention of Falls

Taking the Stairs May Soon Get Easier

Posted 12 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 12, 2017 – Does a long staircase leave you weak? Take heart – researchers say they've developed stairs that "recycle" a person's energy, which could be of help to seniors and disabled people. The stairs use latched springs to store energy when someone goes down them. The energy is then released when a person climbs the stairs again. According to the researchers from Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University in Atlanta, the high-tech stairs absorb a person's energy as he or she descends, which cuts forces on the ankle by 26 percent. But when the person then ascends the same stairs, that energy is released, making the stairs spring up a bit. The ascent is therefore 37 percent easier on the knees than it otherwise would be. "Unlike normal walking where each heel-strike dissipates energy that can be potentially restored, stair ascent is actually very energy ... Read more

Related support groups: Hip Replacement, Knee Joint Replacement, Prevention of Falls

Health Tip: Practice Drowning Prevention at Home

Posted 29 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Drowning can happen most anywhere, even in a small amount of water. The National Safety Council advises parents to: Supervise children when they are near water, including the bath. Empty sources of water – such as a tub or inflatable pool – immediately after use. Before your child gets into water, have all related supplies – such as towels or sunscreen – nearby. If you have to leave the area, always take your child along. Never allow children to play near streams or canals. If you have a pool or hot tub, surround it with a 5-foot- high fence with a self-locking gate. Keep a life preserver and phone nearby. Install an alarm to alert you if a child opens the door to a pool or hot tub. Skip floaties and use a properly-fitting life jacket. Make sure you are properly trained in CPR and first aid. Enroll your child in swim lessons, although they don't eliminate the possibility of ... Read more

Related support groups: Prevention of Falls, Prevention of Fractures

Depression Often a Precursor to Falls in Elderly People

Posted 26 May 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 – Depression appears to raise the risk of falls in elderly people, but the proper dose of psychiatric medication may eliminate that risk, a new study suggests. "Many interventions to prevent falls are expensive and time-intensive, but this is a simple and inexpensive matter of encouraging continued use of psychiatric medication while improving monitoring of fall risk and adjusting medication appropriately," said lead researcher Geoffrey Hoffman. He is a research fellow and an assistant professor of nursing at the University of Michigan's School of Nursing. To examine the link between depression and fall risk, Hoffman's team looked at falls involving more than 7,200 people 65 and older who were part of the National Health and Retirement Study between 2006 and 2010. A moderate rise in symptoms of depression among older people was linked with a 30 percent increase in ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia, Prevention of Falls

Health Tip: Keep Newborns Safer

Posted 24 May 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Hundreds of babies die every year from accidents that are completely preventable. What can parents do to prevent a tragedy? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends: Whenever baby travels with you, always securely strap the infant into an appropriate car seat. The device should always be in the back seat and face toward the rear. Prevent falls by making sure baby is never left alone on any elevated surface. Secure stairs and other unsafe areas with a baby gate. Prevent burns by adjusting the temperature of your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. Never hold a hot beverage while carrying baby. Prevent choking by carefully cutting up food into small pieces. Avoid giving baby foods that pose a choking hazard, such as hot dogs, grapes, carrots, popcorn, peanuts or apples. Make sure baby cannot reach small items that may cause choking. Do not put blankets, pillows ... Read more

Related support groups: Burns - External, Minor Burns, Prevention of Falls

Sleeping Pills Boost Danger of Falls, Fractures in Older Users

Posted 3 May 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 – Falls and resulting hip fractures can prove disabling and even fatal for seniors. And new research suggests the risk of hip fractures rises soon after an older person is prescribed a sleeping pill. Specifically, older people are at greater risk for hip fractures for two weeks after they start taking prescription sleeping pills. Those pills include benzodiazepines such as Valium or Ativan, and newer "Z-drug" alternatives such as Ambien, Sonata or Lunesta. Even though Z-drugs are often prescribed to help people sleep, "there is no evidence that they are a safer alternative to benzodiazepines in relation to hip fracture risk," said study lead author Dr. Ben Carter, of Cardiff University's School of Medicine and the Institute of Psychiatry, in the United Kingdom. "Our study shows that both appear to significantly increase the risk of hip fracture when newly ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Hydroxyzine, Zolpidem, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Lunesta, Diphenhydramine, Vistaril

Strength Training Might Help Prevent Seniors' Falls

Posted 19 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 19, 2017 – Older people are at higher risk for fall-related injuries because bone density and muscle mass diminish over time. But regular exercise can help keep them on their feet, research suggests. More than 800 Americans break a hip each day, usually because of a fall, said Dr. Christopher Sciamanna, an internist at Penn State Hershey Medical Center. Injuries incurred from a fall often require surgery, physical therapy and medication. Often, seniors lose their ability to walk and stay independent, Sciamanna said. He believes that many older people could avoid these costly and challenging issues if the medical community's focus shifted from fall treatment to fall prevention. "You can either make your bones stronger by taking drugs, or you can make yourself less likely to fall by exercise. Or you could do both," Sciamanna said in a Penn State news release. Walking and ... Read more

Related support groups: Fracture, bone, Prevention of Falls, Prevention of Fractures

Hearing Loss May Double in United States by 2060

Posted 2 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 2, 2017 – As the U.S. population ages, millions more will face the prospect of losing their hearing, researchers report. Among American adults 20 and older, hearing loss is expected to increase from 44 million in 2020 (15 percent of adults) to 73.5 million by 2060 (23 percent of adults). The increase will be greatest among older adults, according to the researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore. In 2020, 55 percent of all adults with hearing loss will be 70 or older. In 2060, that rate will jump to 67 percent. "In the coming decades, there will be an increased need for affordable interventions and access to hearing health care services," said lead study author Adele Goman. She's a research fellow at Hopkins' Center on Aging and Health. Goman and her colleagues projected future hearing loss using data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia, Hearing Loss, Prevention of Falls

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