balance & gait recovery physical therapy

Slips, Falls, and Aging-Related Injuries

Falls are a major health concern among older adults. More than one third of older adults fall each year and fall rates tend to increase with advancing age. Falls are the leading cause of injury deaths, the most common cause of non-fatal injuries, and the most common reason for hospital admission due to trauma in older adults. In fact, 95% of hip fractures are caused by falls and every hour there is one death and over 180 emergency department visits for fall-related injuries.

At RPT we are determined to address specific “risk factors” associated with falling which include, muscle weakness, poor balance, difficulty walking, poor use of assistive devices like a cane, and general difficulty completing activities of daily living (ADLs). Additional risk factors like loss of sensation in the feet, vision changes or loss, hearing loss, disease that might lead to a loss of balance or drop in blood pressure and medications will all be accounted for in a detailed history/evaluation and coordinated with the necessary specialist. A fear of falling can be a “red flag” for the need to conduct a “Fall Risk Assessment”.

In addition to improving muscular strength, endurance and a patient’s ability to ambulate safely with or without assistive devices, RPT focuses on improving a patient’s balance with the use of the advanced Biodex Balance System SD. An extremely sophisticated and versatile system that provides safe, fast and accurate “fall risk screening” and “conditioning” for older adults. Our goal at RPT is to educate the patient and to modify the factors that lead to falls, while increasing mobility and confidence; both critical to maintaining personal independence.