Falls are a serious health problem in the USA. Although all age groups can experience falls, the elderly are at higher risk. Indeed, one in four older adults is at risk for falls, and the number of fall-related deaths in the elderly has increased 31% in the last decade.
In the elderly, many risk factors contribute to falls. These include gait problems, poor balance, decreased strength, and medications. In people of all ages, 75% of those with foot problems are at risk for falls.
The importance of fall prevention cannot be over- emphasized. The physicians of Melbourne Podiatry Associates have developed fall prevention protocols. These include evaluation of biomechanics, strength, balance, gait, and range of motion. Treatment can include advice on footwear, recommendations regarding mobility aids, orthotics, bracing devices, possible referral to physical or occupational therapists, and treatment of specific risk factors.
Of special note is a new fall prevention device that we offer. It is called the “balance brace” and is lightweight, flexible, comfortable, and is usually covered by insurance. We have found this device to be very effective in preventing falls.
Our physicians at Melbourne Podiatry Associates will do everything that we can for our patients to help prevent falls.