Physical Therapy and the Elderly

Physical Therapy and the Elderly

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Physical therapy has a very wide scope. People associate physical therapy with injury, but what many do not know is it also accommodates children and the elderly.

We worry a lot for our parents and grandparents. Sometimes, they tend to fall because of imbalance and other factors. Physical Therapy, aside from healing them from the fall, can also help them avoid falling again.

There are other factors that contribute to falling:

  • Weak muscles
  • Poor eye sight
  • Poor balance
  • Low blood pressure
  • Medical conditions

There are measures that we can do at home to keep our elderly from falling. Several of these falls are also caused by accidents. To keep our homes safe, extra measures should be taken.

  • Clear corridors and walkways at all times. Remove clutters and other stuff from th floor.
  • Make sure your rooms are well-lighted. The elderly usually suffers from poor eye sight. We should help them see clearly.
  • Repair damaged floors, and replace torn carpets that may cause slipping.
  • Spill should be wiped out immediately.
  • Mats and rugs should be secure. They should not easily move. If you need to put adhesive tapes to be more secure, so be it. Non slip mats should be used in bathrooms.
  • Install solid grab bars in toilets.
  • Teach the elderly proper body mechanics.

To strengthen their bodies, the elderly should have an exercise program created for them by experts, like physical therapists. Being exposed to physical activities can give them stronger muscles and confidence to do simple tasks.

It is also important to orient our elderly of the possible things that they should do when they fall and no one is around to help them.

  • Always tell them not to panic.
  • If they think they can get up, tell them to roll over on their stomach and crawl toward a chair somewhere.
  • Tell them to stand up using their legs and arms for full support.
  • If they cannot manage to stand up, they can still roll over and crawl. However, they should not force themselves to get up if they really can’t. Make sure they know this. The best thing to do is for them to crawl to the nearest carpet or anywhere that can make them warm while waiting for people to come.

If you have an elderly at home, make sure your home is clutter-free. You have to take extra care and act as if there is a baby in your house. If you can have your cabinets baby-proofed, do it.

It is important for the elderly to stay healthy, and one way of doing that is by exposing them to exercise. Just don’t make up routines. Ask therapists what are the best exercise routines for them.


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