Thursday, 25 May 2017 00:00

Prevent Falls With Improved Foot Care

One in three Americans over 65 will experience a fall this year, many of which will result in hospital and nursing home admissions.  Young, healthy people can break bones or worse in a fall. Senior citizens and those with underlying conditions such as diabetes or osteoporosis are at increased risk for fractures and hospitalization.

Many factors can contribute to a fall including:

$1·      advanced age

$1·      overall wellbeing

$1·      excess weight

$1·      frequent or chronic foot pain

$1·      poor footwear

$1·      poor nutrition

$1·      excessive consumption of alcohol

While some falls result from tripping or stumbling, current research indicates that foot health and strength play a larger role in stability than previously thought. Your feet are your body’s foundation. Taking care of them and paying special attention to their health is important at any age, and becomes more and more critical with every passing year.

Many non-traditional exercise programs such as tai chi and yoga promote balance and can help keep you safe from falls.  Dr. Boris Abramov and Dr. Tatyana Abramova recommend the following gentle exercises that you can try at home:

1. The Flamingo: Stand on one foot for a count of 10 seconds while holding the back of a stable chair or touching a wall. Repeat on the opposite side. Begin by doing this four times on each foot. Gradually increase the number of sets and the length of the count over a period of weeks, and eventually try to step away from the chair or wall. The great thing about this exercise is that you can do it anywhere, even while standing on line at the grocery store! It’s easy: just lift one foot an inch off the floor, and touch it to the opposite ankle.

2. Crane Lift: Put a small item, such as a pen or a coin, on the seat of a chair. Pick it up while balancing on one foot and leaning forward with a straight back. Stand up, put your item in your other hand, and put it back on the chair seat using the same motion that you used to retrieve it. Do this 10 times on each foot.  As you get better at this exercise, place the object lower and lower until you can pick it up off the floor.

3. Sock It To Me: This exercise is the toughest of the three: Try putting on your socks while standing up. While you’re getting the hang of it, stand touching your bed or sofa so you have a soft landing pad if you need one.

Of course, the best way to maintain great foot health is to see your podiatrist for regular visits. Boris Abramov, DPM and Tatyana Abramova, DPM are board-certified experts. They have many years of experience working with patients of all ages. Call Abramov’s Comprehensive Foot Care at 443-872-7052 or click here to contact us today.