Are you worried about your parent or older friend or relative suffering a fall? If not, you should be: at least 25% of adults over 65 suffer falls each year. And many different factors contribute to their risk, from reduced sight, strength and balance to diseases such as neuropathy that reduce sensation in your feet, or even side-effects of certain medications that can lead to increased dizziness and imbalances. 

Now, there are steps you can take to create safer environments for the elderly. And we’ll review tips for reducing the risk of falling in a minute. However, in some cases, simply removing hazards won’t provide enough fall prevention support. So, in those cases, we can recommend a supportive device that will reduce older adults’ risk for falling, while allowing them to maintain mobility and independence. And here’s why that’s so important.  

Why Fall Prevention is Crucial for Older Adults Son helps older mother with fall prevention by holding her arm while walking

Once your loved one suffers one fall, his or her risk for future fall doubles. Plus, falls and their related injuries are currently the leading cause of death in older adults. But even if that first fall doesn’t lead to major injuries, it can increase fear for your loved one. Soon, he or she may hesitate to do something as simple as climb the stairs or leave the house, leading to reduced activity levels, social isolation and a lack of independence. Fortunately, you can avoid these outcomes by asking our podiatrists in Massapequa, NY about getting some help with fall prevention. 

Reducing Falling Risk Hazards at Home

Fall prevention in older adults should begin with a focus on maintaining their strength and balance. Try to have your loved ones engage in regular exercise, particularly activities such as walking, yoga and Tai Chi that can improve both stability and muscle strength. Speak to their doctors about all the medications they’re taking, as certain side effects could increase their risk for falling. 

In and around the home, help your older loved ones set up their space to optimize fall. To begin with, remove all tripping hazards from the space—that includes things such as loose rugs, or low furniture that may fall beneath their sight lines. Arrange clear pathways in the home between high-traffic areas such as the kitchen and the bathroom to reduce the risk of falling. Focus on lighting in the home, keeping it bright enough to help seniors notice any tripping hazards. And pay special attention to stair cases, equipping all flights with railings on each side to provide added support and fall prevention. 

Now, even when you take these preventative measures, you should still bring seniors into our Nassau County podiatry practice for regular checkups. During these visits, we can screen your loved ones for any balance issues, taking early action if we detect any areas of concern. 

To begin with, we may suggest shoe changes—older adults should avoid flip flops, open-backed slippers and, most of all, walking around in socks without grips on the soles. For some seniors, it may be enough to select flat or low-heeled shoes with rubber soles designed for skid-prevention. But, in other cases, choosing supportive shoes may not provide your loved ones with enough fall prevention protection. So, in those cases, we may recommend the additional support of a medical device known as the MBB Moore balance brace.

Supporting Fall Prevention with an MBB Device from Your Massapequa Podiatrists

During regular checkups at the office, Dr. Novneet Chhabra and Dr. Mark Gasparini always screen older adults for loss of balance or strength, along with other risk factors for falling. Then, if we detect an increased risk, we may recommend fitting your loved one for the MBB, or Moore Balance Brace, a Medicare covered device that supports fall prevention by reducing postural swaying and improving postural stability. 

Now, many people worry about the stigma of wearing supportive devices on a regular basis. But the process of getting fitted for the MBB could not be simpler, and its effectiveness at fall prevention is unparalleled. Here’s how it works. 

In the past, we had to cast patients to fit them for custom devices of any kind. But today, we can provide customized fall prevention support by taking 3D camera images of our patients’ feet, simply by using an iPad fitted with a special camera. The process is painless and fast, and provides fabricators with all the information needed to craft the custom MBB fall prevention device. 

But why is the MBB such an effective tool for fall prevention? First, it perfectly captures the contours of your loved one’s arch, offering stability and controlling motion in the forefoot to prevent tumbles. The device is also equipped with a special post in its backing, offering added stability to its wearers. Finally, unlike many medical devices, the MBB is designed to be user friendly. That’s why the latest-model design is equipped with an easy closure system that makes it a breeze to take the device on and off, meaning your loved ones are much more likely to wear it regularly. And, to increase durability and reduce the hassle of regularly replacing the device, the MBB is now crafted from high grade leather that also maximizes comfort for regular wearing.  

Want to help your loved ones practice fall prevention? Ready to help protect them from injuries and support their ongoing mobility and independence? Give our office a call at 516-804-9038 or click here to request a consultation in the office. When you come in with the special seniors in your life, we can screen them for fall risks, and provide fall prevention guidance along with supportive devices. 


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