Preventing trips and falls – Winter Warning from the IOS

Winter Warning from the Irish Osteoporosis Society Charity
/ The National experts on Osteoporosis

The weather is starting to turn cold and icy and this is the time of year that slips, trips and falls occur.

Last year A & E departments were overflowing with senior citizens with multiple broken bones, please help prevent this happening this year.

To help prevent falls and broken bones this winter

  • Get a DXA scan if you have one or more risk factors for bone loss, as preventing or treating Osteoporosis, will significantly reduce your risk of breaking bones and losing your independence.
  • Take the daily amounts of calcium and vitamin D3 to help prevent and treat Osteoporosis, preferably through food.
  • Buy imperishable goods so that if the weather is appalling, you are not forced to venture outside
  • Only go out in the ice or snow if you have no other choice. Take small steps and lean slightly forward at your waist.
  • Get a pair of the detachable shoe grips before they sell out. They slip onto the soles of your shoes and help improve traction on ice and snow.
  • If possible, ask a neighbour or friend to pick up your groceries for you, if the weather is bad
  • Remember to store some salt now for your driveway
  • Have a list of any allergies you may have and any medication you are on in your purse or wallet.
  • Plan ahead: Make sure to set aside additional time to get to your destination. Never rush, as this is when accidents can happen.
  • Be very careful going in and out of shops as the floors maybe wet.

If you or a loved one has a fall

  • Check if you can move all your arms and legs slowly without pain
  • If you fall and experience pain, do not move and have someone call for assistance
  • On your own, try to crawl slowly to the nearest phone
  • Senior citizens living alone should consider getting a life alert pendent. This is a device which connects to your phone system which, if you have a fall you can request help right away.

The best Christmas gift you can give a parent or grandparent is a DXA scan for Osteoporosis. A quarter of of men (25%) and half of of women over 50 have Osteoporosis, even though it is preventable and treatable, only 15% are diagnosed.

More information on how to deal with osteoporosis here.

For any queries please contact
Michele O’Brien, CEO, The Irish Osteoporosis Society / Tel: 01 637 5050

 

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