Prevention of Falls: Balance Physiotherapy

A positive outlook is very important while aging. One should also be aware of the changes the body undergoes. The world statistics for fall reports that 30% of elderly over 65 years fall ever year. This is attributed to the drastic changes in body biomechanics and physiological mechanisms. The important factors which contribute to maintain body’s static and dynamic balance is sensorimotor control, vestibular, joint proprioception, and healthy musculoskeletal system. These systems deteriorate in the process of aging. Loss of foot arches, kyphosis, degenerative changes in joint cartilage and capsules are some examples that affect the body balance. These are some changes noticed in the musculoskeletal system, body mechanics and posture respectively    

Around 80% of falls at home occur in the bathroom; 2.5% occurs during getting in and 9.8% getting out of the shower. This could be due to the height of steps, width of steps, patchy rugs, slippery ramps, slippery bathroom floors and height of toilet seats. These are some hot spots in home environments where an individual has high probability of having a fall. These are some of the environmental factors that has a negative impact on balance.

This can be tackled by carrying out the peripheral vision stimulation exercises, vestibular rehabilitation therapy, strengthening, flexibility training and weight bearing exercises. These exercises help to improve proprioception, ergonomic changes to tackle the environmental factors.