If you’ve ever been so unlucky to experience back pain, or even worse, throw out your back, you know that recovery time can take days or even weeks.
Lower back pain is often due to injury or trauma to the ligaments and muscles from to quick movements, poor lifting techniques, or falls. Falls are extremely dangerous at any age – but especially for older adults who are more prone to osteoporosis and likely to break a bone.
Falls can happen for a number of reasons, but the most common are tripping or slipping, balance problems, poor vision, illness, side effects of certain medications like blood pressure and heart medications, and drinking alcohol.
Prevention is Key
And there are a number of ways to help avoid slips and falls that everyone should put into practice, regardless of age.
When outdoors, wear shoes that provide good traction; high heels and flip-flops are more prone to making you slip and fall. Walk on grass when sidewalks appear icy or slick and put down salt or sand on icy steps and walkways. Indoors, you can help prevent falls by keeping items off floors, electrical cords out of walkways, and using rugs that have skid-proof back. Other fall-prevention tactics at home include using non-skid bath mats in the tub or shower, making sure all stairwells are lit properly and have hand railings on both sides, and purchasing a cordless phone so that you don’t have to rush to the phone when it rings in the other room.
Another key element to help reduce falls and injury is physical activity. Gentle exercises like water aerobics, yoga, walking, and Pilates help improve balance, core strength, coordination, and flexibility – all great health benefits that reduce the risk of falling. If you’re afraid that exercising might worsen your chances for a fall-related injury, speak with a doctor who can provide advice on low-risk activities. Dr. Grigory Goldberg and his team of experts at Spine Care New Jersey are available to provide suggestions and help you feel more comfortable about what you can do to reduce your risk for falls.
If you’ve recently fallen and have started to experience back pain, we encourage you to request an appointment with our spine care specialists.