Fall Prevention Program Hadley, MA

Fall Prevention Program

Falls and a fear of falling can diminish your ability to lead a full and independent life. Although 1 in every 4 older adults falls each year, falling is not a part of normal aging. You have the power to reduce your risk of falls. A physical therapist can help you do so by:

  • Assessing your risk for falling
  • Designing an individualized plan for your fall-prevention needs
  • Helping you make your home as safe as possible
  • Educating you about the medical risk factors associated with falls
  • Providing you with appropriate exercises and balance training
  • Working with other health care professionals to address any underlying medical conditions that could increase your fall risk
  • Providing you with recommendations on appropriate community programs

What Are Falls?

A fall is defined as any event that leads to an unplanned, unexpected contact with a supporting surface, such as the floor or a piece of furniture, that is not the result of a push or shove or the result of a medical event, such as a heart attack or fainting.

A near-fall is a stumble or loss of balance that would result in a fall if you were unable to catch yourself.

There are lots of factors that can increase your risk for falls, including:

  • History of a previous fall
  • Being female
  • Having a sedentary lifestyle
  • Being in overall poor health
  • Recent hospitalization
  • Advanced age
  • Difficulty with walking or keeping your balance
  • Leg weakness
  • Becoming fatigued easily
  • Limited flexibility
  • Problems with your vision or skin (touch) sensation
  • Getting dizzy when you stand up from sitting or lying down (orthostatic hypotension)
  • Medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke, Parkinson disease, or Alzheimer disease
  • Trouble with your memory and thinking
  • Joint pain or arthritis
  • Taking too many medications or taking certain types of medications
  • Depression and/or anxiety
  • Home hazards such as throw rugs, poor lighting, or a lack of handrails on stairs
  • Inappropriate footwear
  • Inappropriate use of a walker or a cane

The more risk factors you have, the greater your risk of falling.

How Is It Diagnosed?

Unlike with other medical conditions, there is no single test that can predict a fall. Adults aged 65 years and older should be screened by their primary care provider on a yearly basis to help determine their risk for falling. Additionally, if you are worried about falling, have had a loss of balance, or have had a fall, you should see a physical therapist. Contact us at Hadley, MA center to learn more about how you can reduce your risk of falling.